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What do you know about Room 39– North Korea’s secret money-making operation? This infamous organization– also known as Office 39 or Bureau 39– has been around since the 1970s. The ultra-private office serves North Korea’s elite– especially the Kim family– by bringing in millions or even billions of dollars every year. Have you ever wondered how Kim Jong-un is able to buy superyachts and armoured Mercedes despite sanctions against the country? That’s all thanks to Room 39. If you ever had any questions about how North Korea’s ruling class has been able to amass billions of dollars, then we’re here to answer them.
Let’s head inside Room 39 and see what’s really hidden behind its doors. You’ll find piles of cash, smuggled gold and jewels, counterfeit money and some of North Korea’s best minds committing cyber crimes for their leader. Through this organization the Kim family and North Korea’s diplomats have smuggled in everything from dance equipment and expensive food to Cognac.
It’s estimated that Room 39 controls about 120 businesses that operate internationally. How do they get away with smuggling and money laundering? Is Kim Jong-un’s net worth really billions of dollars more than we think it is thanks to this mysterious organization? And who’s really calling the shots– him or his sister? These are just some of the mysteries we’ve uncovered about North Korea’s most secretive operation. We know you’re curious, so click play and let’s explore how Room 39 is turning North Korea’s most powerful people into billionaires.
Written by: Courtney Hayes
Narrated by: Craig Freeman
Edited by: Vitalii V.
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00:39 A secret office for North Korea’s elite
01:47 How Room 39 makes its money
04:10 How they avoid getting caught”