Diezani Madueke charged with bribery in the UK, accused of receiving over £100,000 in cash as petroleum minister

Nigeria’s former minister of petroleum resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke has been charged with bribery by the United KIngdom, following a National Crime Agency Investigation.

This is according to a statement by the UK National Crime Agency released on Tuesday, August 22.

The statement read:

  • Diezani Alison-Madueke, aged 63, who also served as president of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), was a key figure in the Nigerian government between 2010 and 2015.
  • The NCA suspects she accepted bribes during her time as Minister for Petroleum Resources, in exchange for awarding multi-million pound oil and gas contracts.
  • She is alleged to have benefitted from at least £100,000 in cash, chauffeur driven cars, flights on private jets, luxury holidays for her family, and the use of multiple London properties.
  • Her charges also detail financial rewards including furniture, renovation work and staff for the properties, payment of private school fees, and gifts from high-end designer shops such as Cartier jewellery and Louis Vuitton goods.
  • Madueke, who currently lives in St John’s Wood, London, will appear at Westminster Magistrates Court on 2 October.
  • Andy Kelly, Head of the NCA’s International Corruption Unit (ICU), said: “We suspect Diezani Alison-Madueke abused her power in Nigeria and accepted financial rewards for awarding multi-million pound contracts.
  • “These charges are a milestone in what has been a thorough and complex international investigation.
  • “Bribery is a pervasive form of corruption, which enables serious criminality and can have devastating consequences for developing countries. We will continue to work with partners here and overseas to tackle the threat.”
  • Assets worth millions of pounds relating to the alleged offences have already been frozen as part of the ongoing investigation.
  • In March this year, the NCA also provided evidence to the US Department of Justice that enabled them to recover assets totalling USD$53.1m linked to Diezani Alison-Madueke’s alleged corruption.
  • ICU officers have also worked closely with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of Nigeria during the investigation, as well as the with the NCA-hosted International Anti-Corruption Coordination Centre.
  • The IACCC brings together specialist anti-corruption investigators from agencies around the world to tackle allegations of corruption involving politically exposed people. It is currently working in 37 different jurisdictions.
  • Andrew Penhale, Chief Crown Prosecutor for the CPS, said: “The Crown Prosecution Service has authorised the NCA to charge Diezani Alison-Madueke with bribery offences.
  • “The CPS made the decision to authorize the charge after reviewing a file of evidence from the NCA relating to allegations of bribery in Nigeria.
  • “Criminal proceedings against Ms Alison-Madueke are active and she has the right to a fair trial.
  • “It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.
  • “The function of the CPS is not to decide whether a person is guilty of a criminal offence, but to make fair, independent and objective assessments about whether it is appropriate to present charges for a criminal court to consider.”

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