US signs agreement for repatriation of 23M Abacha Loot to Nigeria

The total amount of funds repatriated by the US has exceeded $334.7 million with the latest agreement

The US government has signed an agreement to repatriate $23 million laundered by Nigeria’s former military ruler, according to Nigeria’s Justice Minister Abubakar Malami.

Justice Minister Abubakar Malami signed on behalf of Nigeria while the US ambassador to Nigeria Mary Leonard signed the agreement on behalf of the US government.

Nigeria has in the past recovered several other tranches of the loot, which are proceeds believed to have been diverted from public coffers by the military administration of Gen. Sani Abacha in the 1990s.

In 2020, the US also agreed to return over $308 million in confiscated funds to Nigeria.

In 2006, about $723 million of the loot was returned to Nigeria from Switzerland.

Malami stated that the funds won will be used in the country’s infrastructure development projects.

Leonard said the US Department of Justice and the FBI seized these funds when they laundered money to the US and the UK.

“Combined with a $311.7m seized and repatriated with the assistance of the Bailiwick of Jersey and the government of Nigeria in 2020, this return brings the total amount of funds repatriated in this case by the US to more than $334.7 million,” she added.


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