‘Gebakken lucht’ is a Dutch expression that literally means “baked air”, proverbially referring to somethingthat appears like quite something, while it is in fact nothing. Oil and gas corporations that delve valuableresources in Africa often have offices in the Netherlands or similar countries with large amounts ofmoney flowing through and little to no real activity. These money flows without underlying substancecan be seen as ‘gebakken lucht’ and are classified as illicit financial flows by UNCTAD. This article showshow one could monitor these immense but hidden illicit financial flows which, when retrieved, wouldmake Africa almost debt-free. We show how red flag indicators can reveal the risk of money laundering,tax evasion, or tax avoidance. We identify 61 different red flags and apply them to five oil and gas corporations(of which one is a ‘clean case’) active in Angola, Mozambique, Nigeria, and Egypt. These five corporationshave their headquarters in Europe with 173 subsidiaries in the Netherlands. Their annual totalrevenue in Africa is 36.4 billion USD. We demonstrate how such an analysis works and draw preliminaryconclusions about the validity of the red flags for monitoring illicit financial flows to reach sustainabledevelopment goals.