The Epoch Times chief financial officer Weidong (Bill) Guan has been arrested and charged with laundering at least $67 million in stolen money through company accounts. A federal grand jury indicted Guan on one count of money laundering and two counts of bank fraud claiming he lied to a financial institution about the source of the money, some of which allegedly came from fraudulently obtained unemployment benefits. The scheme supposedly involved using cryptocurrency to purchase discounted prepaid debit cards, which were then loaded with illegally obtained funds, prosecutors said. Affiliated with Falung Gong, a spiritual movement banned in China, The Epoch Times has been a longtime critic of the Chinese Communist Party and has emerged as a prominent supporter of Donald J. Trump and his allies. It “intends to and will fully cooperate with any investigation dealing with the allegations against Mr. Guan,” and suspended Guan. The Justice Department noted that “the charges do not relate to the media company’s newsgathering activities.” No other employees were named in the indictment.

Christophe Deloire
Christophe Deloire

Reporters Without Borders secretary general Christophe Deloire, who had led the organization since 2012, died June 8 following a battle with cancer. Deloire was also founding president of the Forum on Information and Democarcy, and in 2023 was appointed general delegate of the états généraux de l'information, an initiative spearheaded by French president Emmaunel Macron. He was instrumental in helping Russian broadcast journalist Marina Ovsiannikova flee the country in 2022 after she came under fire for denouncing the war in Ukraine on live television, and worked for the release of journalist Olivier Dubois, who was held by Islamic extremists in Mali for two years and freed in 2023, in addition to aiding numerous other jailed reporters. “Christophe Deloire led the organization at a crucial time for the right to information. His contribution to defending this fundamental right has been considerable," said Pierre Haski, chairman of RSF's Board of Directors.

Mathias Döpfner
Mathias Döpfner

Axel Springer, the German media company that owns US-based Politico and Business Insider, appears to be throwing in the towel on hybrid work. The company’s CEO, Mathias Döpfner, says it intends to return to an “office-first culture” that will require employees to show up at the office five days a week. That edict will also apply to its US units. Döpfner says the decision is based on “the strength of personal interactions.” According to German news platform Medieninsider, he has written an email to his managers asking them to present concepts by July outlining how the move back to office work could work legally and operationally. A company statement asserted that “in the long run, more physical proximity and personal interaction are essential for creativity, motivation, a sense of belonging, team spirit, and alignment on a common mission.”

Kinective

United Airlines is formally launching Kinective Media by United Airlines, a media network that gives marketers the opportunity to scale their reach across a wide range of channels including United's mobile app and inflight entertainment screens, at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, which runs from June 17-21. Kinective Media uses insights from travel behaviors to connect customers to personalized, real-time advertising, content, experiences and offers from leading brands. The networks, which is already working with brands such as Norwegian Cruise Line and Macy's, is focusing on premium brand relationships across key verticals such as retail, luxury goods, financial services, automotive, media brands and travel. "We've built a first-of-its-kind, real-time, adtech-enabled traveler media network," said Richard Nunn, CEO of United’s MileagePlus loyalty program.