All posts by Pethő András

“The Russian Government Wants To See Me Dead” – says the source of the Panama Papers

Leaked files of Uber reveal secret lobbying operations in Hungary

As part of an international investigative project, Direkt36 has gained access to the lobbying files of Uber, the world’s most well-known ride-sharing company. These documents revealed that the US company’s representatives had access to Hungarian ministers and other decision-makers. In the end, however, the Orbán government turned out to be more afraid of upsetting Hungarian taxi drivers, and this was partly the reason why Uber was defeated, and eventually left Hungary.

Continue reading

Inside the opposition’s crushing defeat against Viktor Orbán

A tíz legmeghökkentőbb dolog, ami az ellenzéki kampányban történt

Inside Viktor Orbán’s war for Index, Hungary’s most influential news website

Another Pegasus target with political ties: a lawyer who oversees elections and worked for opposition party Jobbik

Orbán’s ally told Hungarian intelligence services that opposition is the greatest national security threat, leaked recording reveals

Senior official in Socialist governments had an offshore company, Pandora Papers reveal

Entrepreneur enriched by state tenders starts a new business on the Orbáns’ family land

Tax changes under Viktor Orbán turned Hungary into a tax planning tool

Prominent business allies of Viktor Orbán’s government had secret offshore businesses, Pandora Papers reveal

Nearly 12 million confidential documents were leaked about secret offshore companies, investigated by the world’s largest international collaboration of journalists. Direkt36 was also part of the project and revealed that influential Hungarian pro-government figures including Balázs Kertész and Gellért Jászai also had offshore interests.

Continue reading

He has been uncovering the lavish lifestyle of Viktor Orbán’s circles. This summer, he was surveilled with Pegasus spyware

Anti-Orbán news site’s publisher came under surveillance when his contract with an opposition party was revealed

Páva’s smartphone was hacked with the cyberweapon developed by Israeli company NSO on March 16, the very day when it became public information that opposition party Democratic Coalition signed a contract with his company for social media consulting.

Continue reading

Hungarian opposition publisher was surveilled with Pegasus in spring 2021

Previous reporting showed that Pegasus was used against Hungarian targets in 2018 and 2019. Now there is evidence that Zoltán Páva, a former politician who is a news publisher now, was under surveillance in March and May this year.

Continue reading

Hungarian journalist reporting on corruption surveilled with Pegasus for months

During her surveillance, Brigitta Csikász, one of Hungary’s most experienced crime reporters, wrote about the misuse of EU funds among other topics. Csikász’s investigations revealed that, despite the alarms of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), Hungarian authorities lacked either the will or the ability to prosecute the suspicious spending of EU money.

Continue reading

State Secretary who disagreed with a Hungarian cabinet member over Paks nuclear power plant targeted by Pegasus spyware

Attila Aszódi became a target shortly before his dismissal in 2019 at a time when he had several conflicts with the Hungarian cabinet member supervising Paks 2. The State Secretary disagreed with the measures that would have benefitted the Russian party building the new nuclear power plant and would have changed the original timetable of the project.

Continue reading

President of the Hungarian Bar Association and several other lawyers have been targeted by Pegasus

Professional secrecy does not seem to protect lawyers from becoming targets of surveillance. Bánáti was targeted during a famous murder case, while another lawyer became the target at the time when he wanted to run against the Fidesz mayor of a small town during the last municipal elections.

Continue reading

Hungarian journalists and critics of Orbán were targeted with Pegasus, a powerful Israeli cyberweapon

An international investigation has found that Pegasus has been abused by countries around the world. Hungarian targets include media company owner Zoltán Varga and people connected to him, Lajos Simicska’s son and lawyer, as well as several investigative journalists.

Continue reading

Inside the secrets of the Orbán family’s businesses

Company with murky background is at the center of Hungary’s Chinese vaccine deal