Swedish TV exposé on Icelandic secret arms smuggler

Loftur Jóhannesson.

Loftur Jóhannesson. Photo: Screenshot from Upp­drag Granskn­ing

Among the Icelandic names to be found in the now infamous ‘Panama Papers’ is that of Loftur Jóhannesson – an alleged secret arms smuggler working for the CIA.

A Panama Papers exposé on Swedish television on Wednesday night looked into the suspected arms dealings of the man simply known as ‘the Icelander’, alleging he made millions of dollars from such activities as smuggling weapons from Eastern Europe to Afghanistan and Somalia.

Jóhannesson, now 85, made a fortune in the 1970s and 80s from spying and arms deals, according to the website of the documentary (link in Swedish).

The papers leaked from law firm Mossack Fonseca contain the ...

The papers leaked from law firm Mossack Fonseca contain the names of some 600 Icelanders. Photo: AFP

According to the latest Panama Papers revelations, Sweden’s Nordea Bank managed offshore companies registered to Jóhannesson. They have declined to comment on the link.

“There can be no doubt that Jóhannesson was an arms smuggler,” says author of Private Warrior Ken Sil­ver­stein.

“Millions of dollars were paid for each successful arms-smuggling mission. The US secret services paid very well for work such as Jóhannesson carried out.”




4 °C


Later today

9 °C



8 °C

Warning: Yellow More

Exchange rates

USD USD 123.94 EUR EUR 140.40
GBP GBP 158.89 DKK DKK 18.82
NOK NOK 14.61 SEK SEK 13.68
CHF CHF 122.99 JPY JPY 1.09
ISK price of selected currencies, according to the official exchange rate of the Central Bank of Iceland. Updated daily.