You have been Bonanzaed #9: Not publishing all the facts about leaked documents

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In a serie of blogposts I will show how Yana Yerlashova, a former Kremlin funded RT journalist, and  Dutch blogger Max van der Werff present all kind of nonsense on MH17 with the intention to spread disinformation. They use their company or label Bonanza Media for this. Hence the ‘You have been Bonanzaed’ like in ‘You have been fooled’. This is example 9.  The whole serie of examples of nonsense by this duo can be read here.

In early 2020 Bonanza Media published several documents which were leaked from the JIT dossier. How Bonanza Media obtained these documents is not clear. Yerlashova and Van der Werff protect their sources and do not reveal. Possibly a Russian intelligence agency hacked Malaysian police or public prosecutor somewhere in the periode 2018-2019 and obtained documents. How many were stolen is not clear but likely quite a few.

One of the leaked documents is a 2015 investigation done by the Australian police (AFP) on photos showing the Buk Telar in various locations in Eastern Ukraine. Two of the photos show the Buk placed on a lowloader pulled by a white Volvo truck. The combination is parked just outside Donetsk.

The investigators investigated the metadata of the four photos found on the internet and concluded that the creation date was later than the modification date. suggesting manipulation of the metadata. The investigators also concluded these are not the original photos.

So nothing special at all. Metadata of internet published photos have no forenstic meaning at all.

Bonanza failure 

However Bonanza Media, found by former Kremlin founded RT journalist Yerlashova,  has a different opinion. Or should I say agenda.

Bonanza Media in their February newsletter (archived)  in which the leaked document was made public did not show the last lines of the AFP investigation. The screenshot below was taken from the leaked document. The leaked documents were made available for download by Bonanza Media for a short time only. These cannot be downloaded anymore. Screenshots in the newsletter are so small the text is unreadable.

The text below provide context not mentioned by Bonanza Media intentionally.

One of the Dutch prosecutors during the trial explained that over the years more investigation was done on these photos and the situation these photos show.

The full text of what the prosecutor told is available here. 

JIT obtained the orginal video of which Paris Match published screenshots. The metadata of this video like the time and date matches the weather at that time. Also metadata of captured telephone conversation of separatists guarding the transport match the time of the video. Also images of Google Streetview matched with the video. Dutch forensic institute NFI found no manipulation of the video.

Another Australian police investigation part of the dossier showed that a video shot in Zuhres had the correct metadata.

The prosecutor says that the Bonanza team decided to only publish the report which suggests a manipulation of photos and not publish another report which concluded there were no manipulations.


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