Méxicoleaks was launched in 2015 as a platform for people to anonymously share information leaks about anything in the public interest, including corruption, government spending and abuse. The nine organisations that make up Méxicoleaks have already run numerous corruption investigations based on leaks and broken a number of high-profile scandals.
Since President Enrique Peña Nieto came into power in 2012 intimidation, assaults and killings of journalists in Mexico have increased by 80%, with statistics saying a journalist is attacked every 26 hours in the country. Between fear of corrupt authorities and retribution from cartels, self-censorship in parts of Mexico is almost absolute.
Méxicoleaks’ aim is to bring a new kind of watchdog journalism to the country, allowing people to submit information to them anonymously.
The eight news organisations that make up Méxicoleaks are Aristegui News, PODER, Animal Politico, Emeequis, MásDe 131, Pie de Página, Proceso and R3D . Méxicoleaks makes use of open source software made available by GlobalLeaks, and all eight members of Méxicoleaks have access to the platform where they can anonymously read and verify whistleblowers’ information.
Two days after the Méxicoleaks launch, popular radio station MVS fired high-profile talk show host Carmen Aristegui, and her assistants Daniel Lizarraga and Irving Huerta for their connection with Mexicoleaks. The reporting team had recently uncovered a huge scandal involving Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto. The casa blanca (white house) scandal investigated the purchase of a multi-million dollar home from a contractor connected to a billion dollar infrastructure project.
Many noted the events acted as evidence of the need for Méxicoleaks, given the daily challenges facing even the country’s most high-profile journalists – “She has become an emblem of press freedom under siege” reported the New York Times.
Another Méxicoleaks story which broke in 2015 led to Peña Nieto admitting that the Mexican government had spent nearly a million pesos (around $60,000) on 37 hotel rooms in Brussels for a summit of the European Union and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States.
Méxicoleaks have continued to receive submissions, breaking a number of high-profile corruption scandals.