Latin America correspondent Joshua Goodman spent months gaining the trust of Matthias Krull, a press-shy convicted felon, but the payoff was an exclusive story of how the Swiss banker facilitated the looting of Venezuela’s state coffers. Krull’s government testimony is credited with boosting multiple criminal investigations against corrupt allies of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
During a series of off-the-record meetings over 10 months, Goodman and Krull developed a rapport, allaying concerns of the former banker and his attorney over security and that such an interview might anger Miami prosecutors. Krull shared documents bolstering his claim that his former firm, driven by profits, ignored indications of money laundering by its clients. And at one point Krull allowed Miami-based video journalist Cody Jackson to record the removal of his court-ordered ankle monitor. The access and trust were key in helping Goodman stave off major competitors also chasing the interview.
On a busy news day, Goodman’s story — just his latest exposing corruption in Venezuela — was the most-read on apnews.com, with remarkable reader engagement. Social media in Venezuela buzzed, as this was the first time anyone had heard from Krull since his high-profile arrest in 2018, whjile a leading Swiss website for financial news, competing against Goodman on this story, even put it atop their “Best of the Month” selections.