Sophia Baumann, born 1997, is an investigative reporter and data journalist. After studying politics and public administration in Konstanz and Richmond (Virginia, USA), she was trained at the German School of Journalism in Munich. During her studies, she worked at the German daily Süddeutsche Zeitung, at the magazine Der Spiegel and the German public broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk. Before joining paper trail media, Sophia Baumann was an editor at Süddeutsche Zeitung. She was part of the Suisse-Secrets-team, which investigated the dubious behaviour of the Swiss bank Credit Suisse.
Investigative Data Journalist
Christo Buschek, born in 1980, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning programmer and journalist, who works for paper trail media and Der Spiegel. Buschek is focused on enhancing traditional forms of investigation using data and computational methods. His software has been used to preserve the most extensive collection of documentation on war crimes in Syria which informed international bodies like the IIIM and the ICC. In 2021 he received numerous honors for the project "Built to Last", which documented the mass incarceration of Uyghurs in China. Buschek is a Fellow at the Engelberg Center on Innovation Law & Policy at the New York University.
Maria Christoph, born 1992, is a crossmedial investigative journalist. In 2020, she was awarded the German Reporter:innenpreis in the category "podcast". In 2022, her work was honored with the Axel-Springer-Prize. For her research into abuses of power in star gastronomy she is nominated for the renown Theodor-Wolff-Prize. Christoph is graduate of the German School of Journalism and a former fellow of Netzwerk Recherche. She studied Journalism, Communication Science and Psychology in Munich and Singapore and worked as a freelance reporter for the public broadcaster BR, Die Zeit and Vice before joining paper trail media.
Anja Hübner, born 1980, supports the paper trail media team administratively with her passion for organisation. After she finished her education as a hotel manager in Überlingen at Lake Constance, she gained experience in various positions as an event manager in the hotel industry. Another creative role in her career was the management of professional event catering at Kofler & Kompanie in Munich. Before joining paper trail media, she was a project manager at a congress agency, where she was responsible for the planning implementation of medical curricula.
Senior Investigative Reporter
Carina Huppertz, born 1989, is a cross-media investigative reporter. In her work she covers human trafficking and labour exploitation, often with a focus on Eastern Europe, as well as extremism and security agencies. Before joining paper trail media, she worked for the German public broadcaster Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk and its investigative TV-programmes ARD "Fakt" and MDR "exakt", where she also co-directed several documentaries. While her focus is investigations, she also enjoys picking up a camera from time to time to work behind the lens.
Dajana Kollig, born 1997, is an investigative reporter. She studied languages and philosophy in Augsburg and Paris. Before joining paper trail media, she was a student at the reknown German School of Journalism in Munich. During her studies, she work for the French-German TV-broadcaster Arte.
Senior Investigative Reporter
Hannes Munzinger, born 1988, is an award-winning journalist and book author. Before joining paper trail media, he worked for the Munich based daily Süddeutsche Zeitung; he took part in international investigations as the Panama Papers, the Pegasus Project or the Daphne Project. Having started his career as a data journalist, he still likes coding and automating research wherever it serves the story. His revelations cover a wide range of topics, with a focus on tax crimes, money laundering and corruption as well as cybercrime. In 2022, he co-authored the bestseller "Swiss Secrets".
Maria Retter, born in 1993, is an investigative journalist. Before joining paper trail media, she worked as an editor for the Austrian newspaper Der Standard and co-founded Inspektorin Grün, a research platform for constructive environmental journalism.
After completing her studies in international business and economics, as well as political science in Innsbruck and Paris, she was trained at the Austrian Media Academy and the German Journalism College. She contributed to investigations of the Austrian outlet Dossier. Her work was also featured in Zeit and Zeit Online.
Investigative Reporter (on sabbatical)
Ruben Schaar, born in 1990, is a crossmedial investigative journalist. After studying psychology in Berlin he was trained at the German School of Journalism in Munich. Before joining paper trail media, Ruben Schaar published a non-fictional storytelling broadcast for the public broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk and was awarded with the Gutenberg-Recherchepreis for an investigation that brought to light a system of social fraud.
Timo Schober, born 1997, is an investigative reporter. He studied international business administration in Vienna and Bordeaux. During his studies he worked as a freelance journalist for several media outlets such as Falter, Der Standard and Datum. Before joining paper trail media he completed the German School of Journalism in Munich. During that time he made an internship at the business department of Der Spiegel and also published for Zeit Online.
Senior Investigative Editor
Elisa Simantke, born in 1986, is an investigative editor and journalist. Before joining paper trail media, she worked as Editorial Director of Investigate Europe, a crossborder team of European journalists she co-founded in 2016. In those years she has lead dozens of crossborder investigations and was responsible for the teams' international media partnerships as well as its own publication channels. European politics and economics have always been a main focus of her work. From 2011 to 2016 she worked as an editor and European affairs reporter for the German daily newspaper Der Tagesspiegel.
Sophia Stahl, born in 1997, is an investigative journalist with a focus on China's influence overseas. Among her significant investigations, she has delved into how cross-border scientific research benefits the Chinese military and the manner in which Chinese students are compelled to sign binding contracts.
Sophia Stahl received her training at the investigative newsroom CORRECTIV. Here, she contributed to investigations concerning right-wing extremism, abortion medical care and the CumEx-scandal.
Senior Investigative Reporter
Hakan Tanriverdi, born 1984, works as a reporter covering cybersecurity. He is mainly focusing on hacking groups and trying to find out who they are working for, on a name- and employer-basis. His investigations tend to be on the more technical side and are assisted by scripts, scrapers and querying databases. Before joining paper trail media, he worked for the German public broadcaster ARD (Bayerischer Rundfunk) and Süddeutsche Zeitung.
Co-Founder & Director
Frederik Obermaier, born 1984, is a book-author and Pulitzer-Prize-winning investigative reporter. Together with Bastian Obermayer, he initiated the Panama Papers, Bahamas Leaks and Paradise Papers-investigations. He was received numerous honors for his work. In 2016, he was elected Germany's "Journalist of the Year". He is the co-founder of the Anti-Corruption Data Collective, board member of Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism (ARIJ) and author of several books, including the best selling accounts of the Panama Papers and of the so called Ibiza Affair, which led to snap elections in Austria.
Co-Founder & Director
Bastian Obermayer, born 1977, is a Pulitzer-Prize winning investigative reporter. With his colleague Frederik Obermaier he received the ground breaking Panama Papers leak from an anonymous source. ICIJ-member Obermayer is on the board of Forbidden Stories since its founding in 2017 and won many awards, e.g. the German Reporter Award and the George Polk Award. He wrote several books, including the best selling accounts of the Panama Papers and of the so called Ibiza Affair, which led to snap elections in Austria and was turned into a fiction TV mini series by SKY. Before founding paper trail media, Obermayer worked for Süddeutsche Zeitung.
Paper trail media's editorial decisions are made independently and transparently.
The Signals Network is regularly providing assistance by supporting whistleblowers.