The Team

OpenSanctions is a small business that develops the open source technologies and the database they produce. Our team is as passionate about producing high-quality data as about fighting financial crime.

Friedrich Lindenberg is the founder of OpenSanctions. His interest in watchlist data is inspired by his work in investigative reporting. Friedrich led the data team at the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) from 2016 to 2021, where he contributed to numerous investigations into transnational crime, offshore finance and money laundering; including the Russian and Azerbaijani Laundromat cases.

He started the Aleph project, an open-source data platform used by reporters and analysts in over 40 media organisations to explore large structured and unstructured datasets and find reporting leads.


Frederik Richter worked as a financial and investigative journalist for 20 years, during which he uncovered numerous cases of fraud, money laundering and bribery. His main interest has always been the space where power and money overlap.

Frederik reported from the Middle East and South East Asia for over ten years, including for Reuters. In 2015, he joined the Berlin-based investigative newsroom CORRECTIV where he led a number of award-winning investigations, including on the global CumEx tax fraud. In 2020, he published a book on the foreign corrupt practices still widespread in the export business of German industry, with chapters including on Brazil, South Africa, Russia and the Arab world.


Shauna Blackmon is a communications specialist, passionate about using innovative tech for social good. Her background is in journalism and communications, and in recent years, she has changed her focus to helping NGO and tech start-ups tell their stories.

She hopes to help steer the conversation on how technologies can be carefully and safely implemented to advance all of humanity, rather than help a selected few.

Shauna is based in Barcelona and trains as an acrobat in her free time.


JD Bothma is a software developer with a deep interest in making data meaningful, and making systems work. At OpenSanctions he works on the data platform and supports customers in making use of the data. Previously as Head of Tech and then Head of Product at OpenUp in South Africa, JD was responsible for developing numerous open data tools, making information easily accessible to both technical and non-technical audiences and clients in government, civil society, academia, and the media.

He has a passion for understanding how data is best shared to be easily usable, and helping users understand the opportunities and limitations of a dataset.


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