Skip to comments.Oil firms' Africa dealings probed
Posted on 05/23/2004 4:47:39 AM PDT by rdb3Edited on 07/12/2004 4:15:29 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
Los Angeles, , May. 22 (UPI) -- A grand jury and congressional investigators are probing real estate purchases by U.S. oil companies that may have constituted bribes to an African dictator.
The Los Angeles Times reported Saturday the two separate investigations involve high-priced land purchases made by the oil companies through a holding company beleived controlled by the president of Equatorial Guinea.
(Excerpt) Read more at washtimes.com ...
I'm sure this is one way it works.
Another way bribes get paid to public officials, I believe, is through speaking fees paid to politicians; large book deals for books that go nowhere, masked by block sales which are fake sales (it would be difficult to prove if they ever got into the hands of real human beings or simply went straight to a warehouse before going to the landfill; it would be hard to prove if they were ever actually published and delivered anywhere at all).
Another way is by setting up think tanks and institutes that are funded by donations from overseas. A "Chair" at a university funded by donations from abroad. A multi-million dollar partnership at a law firm for which no legal work is performed.
In some cases or maybe most cases the above can be means not of receiving new bribes, but of laundering old bribes back into daylight.
The alleged mercenaries arrested in Zimbabwe are believed to have been on their way to a covert military training camp in Cameroon.
The men were remnants of South Africa's defunct mercenary company Executive Outcomes.
They were planning to join another former Executives Outcomes operative in Equatorial Guinea in an elaborate plot to overthrow President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, which was supposed to have taken place next week.
The coup plot has been denied by the British-based company Logo Logistics, which employs the suspected mercenaries. The company claims they were going to provide security for mining operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
(The article may also be found on the thread linked in my previous post)
(snip)...The foiled plot to oust President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo and replace him with opposition leader Severo Moto Nsa ranks as one of the most farcical military adventures in Africa's long history of coup-making. It may also embarrass the governments of Spain and South Africa as questions are asked about how the plotters were able to organise their plan with apparent impunity.
Africa Confidential has learned that both the arrests of 15 ex-South African and other soldiers in Bioko, following the seizure of a United States-registered plane in Zimbabwe, and the arrests of a further 64 ex-South African soldiers on 6 March were part of a mismanaged plot to overthrow President Obiang and install Spanish-based opposition leader Severo Moto. Moto, who was involved in a separate, failed mercenary-led conspiracy in 1997, has vigorously denied the charge.
President Obiang will doubtless try to use the failed coup to his advantage. His position has seemed to weaken in recent months, with the succession battle heating up and rifts developing within the country's tiny ruling clique. The latest blow to Obiang came late last month when he visited Washington D.C. in an attempt to resolve problems with his government's account at Riggs Bank. Obiang is the sole signatory on that account, which had a balance of more than US$600 million. The account has recently been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and an official at Riggs Bank has been interrogated by US agents.
source: http://www.africa-confidential.com/ 2 posted on 03/11/2004 12:06:18 AM PST by endthematrix
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