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US repatriates another $20.6 million Abacha booty

U.S. repatriates another $20.6m Abacha loot

The United States Department of Justice (DoJ) has repatriated more than $20.6 million in assets linked to the late former head of state, General Sani Abacha and his associates.

The DoJ, in a statement Thursday, November 17, 2022, said the transfer of funds “is consistent with an August 23 agreement between the governments to repatriate assets confiscated by the United States that were attributable to the kleptocracy of the former Nigerian dictator”.

“The confiscated assets represent corrupt funds laundered during and after the military rule of General Abacha, who became head of state in Nigeria by a military coup on November 17, 1993,” the statement said.

According to a statement posted on the DoJ’s website, the repatriation brings the total amount forfeited and returned by the United States in this case to approximately $332.4 million.

The transfer of funds ultimately stems from a 2014 judgment in the District of Columbia ordering the forfeiture of approximately $500 million in assets tied to the former dictator.

The confiscated assets represent corrupt funds laundered during and after the military rule of Abacha, who became head of state in a military coup on November 17, 1993 and held that position until his death on November 17, 1993. June 8, 1998.

The complaint filed in the case alleged that Abacha, his son Mohammed, their associate, Abubakar Bagudu, now Governor of Kebbi State, and others embezzled, embezzled and extorted billions of dollars from coffers government and others, then laundered their criminal proceeds. through US financial institutions and transactions.

The statement read: ‘The UK’s cooperation in the investigation, restraint and execution of the US judgment, as well as the valuable contributions of Nigeria and other law enforcement partners around the world , including the UK’s National Crime Agency, as well as those of the Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, have been instrumental in recovering these funds.

”Under the agreement signed in August, the United States agreed to transfer 100% of confiscated net assets to Nigeria to support three critical infrastructure projects in Nigeria that had previously been authorized by the Nigerian President, General of Division Muhammadu Buhari (retired) and the Nigerian Legislature.

“The $20,637,622.27 marks a slight reduction from the $23 million announced in August, mainly due to fluctuations in the exchange rate between the British pound and the US dollar. The funds governed by this agreement will help finance the second Niger bridge, the Lagos-Ibadan highway and the Abuja-Kano road – investments that will benefit the citizens.

The Department appreciates the considerable assistance provided by the Governments of the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Jersey and France in this investigation.

He added that the case was brought under the Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative by a team of dedicated prosecutors from the Criminal Division’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section, working in partnership with the Federal Bureau. of Investigation.

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