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BAK

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Kikwete kazi kwako, omba pesa zote za mafisadi katika bank za nje ya nchi na hata ndani ya nchi zirudishwe Treasury.

Swiss return first Abacha funds

BBC News Online
Friday, 19 December, 2003, 11:09 GMT

Sani Abacha ruled Nigeria from 1993 until his death in 1998
Officials in Switzerland have approved the return of some $88m (£50m) linked to Nigeria's late General Sani Abacha.
Since 1999, more than $600m connected to the former military leader has been frozen in bank accounts in Switzerland.

The Nigerian government wants all the money released as soon as possible, but Swiss officials say this can't be done until investigations are completed.

General Abacha is believed to have embezzled as more than $2bn from Nigeria whilst he was in power.


Possible appeal

Yves Klein, a Nigerian government lawyer told AP news agency that the decision by Geneva prosecutors to transfer the money to an account at the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland, was reached on Wednesday.


More than $600m was frozen in Swiss accounts
"It's the first time money has been returned [by the Swiss] that is directly linked to the Abacha family," he said.

The Abacha family are examining the possibilities of appealing against the decision to transfer the money.

Last month, Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala visited Swiss officials to try to speed up the return of the money.

He also announced that banking authorities in Jersey had returned $149m of Abacha's money to Nigeria.

Switzerland has already handed over to Nigeria's authorities a large number of records.

Officials say they hope to return the remaining amount by the end of next year once they have established where the money came from.
 

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Tuesday, 14 December, 1999, 13:08 GMT
Abacha's five-hundred-million dollar accounts frozen
BBC News Online

The authorities in Switzerland say that they have frozen five-hundred-and-fifty million dollars in bank accounts belonging to the late Nigerian dictator, Sani Abacha, members of his family and his associates.

Others named on the accounts include Abacha's former security advisor, Alhaji Ismaila Gwarzo, and a former government minister, Abubakar Attiku Bagudu.

The chief prosecutor in Geneva Bernard Bertrossa, said that the money had been frozen in a dozen Swiss banks.

The BBC correspondent in Geneva says that the freezing is only temporary.

The Nigerians must show a specific link between their domestic investigations and the blocked assets. Switzerland first announced the freezing of the accounts in October, but this is the first time any specific sum has been mentioned.
 

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Monday, 4 September, 2000, 14:33 GMT 15:33 UK
Swiss banks rapped over Abacha loot
BBC News Online

Abacha's bank accounts have been frozen in Switzerland

The BBC in no way endorses any e-mails linking to this story which offer ways to make money. Anyone in the UK receiving such a letter or e-mail is advised not to reply. If you are a victim of fraud connected to such a letter or e-mail, please contact your local police computer crime unit.
Several leading banks in Switzerland have been criticised by the country's regulators for accepting money from the family of the late Nigerian military ruler, Sani Abacha.

The Nigerian Government is trying to recover an estimated $3bn in embezzled state funds sent abroad during General Abacha's five-year rule.

In a report, the Swiss Federal Banking Commission said 19 banks had dealings with his regime and, although they did report their suspicions of money-laundering to the Swiss authorities, they should not have accepted the money in the first place.

Six banks - three branches of Crédit Suisse plus Crédit Agricole Indosuez, Union Bancaire Privée and MM Warburg - were singled out for failing to run adequate checks on new accounts, including those opened by General Abacha's two sons.

"The mere fact that significant assets of dubious origin, from people close to former Nigerian President Sani Abacha, were deposited at Swiss banks is highly unsatisfactory and damages the image of Switzerland as a financial centre," Banking Commission Chairman Kurt Hauri said after the 10-month investigation.

The big freeze

At Nigeria's request, Switzerland has frozen hundreds of millions of dollars held there, as have Luxembourg and Liechtenstein.

The commission said that almost a third of the Abacha money deposited with Swiss banks had first been banked in the UK, United States and Austria.

General Abacha ruled Nigeria from 1993 until his death in 1998 and, according to the current government, he used a circle of family members, close aides and business associates to dispose of the cash.

It was amassed by awarding contracts to front companies, accepting massive bribes and by siphoning money direct from the Nigerian treasury.

There are stories of vans delivering stacks of banknotes from the Central Bank to the homes of Abacha's family and friends
 

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