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JP Morgan ‘sent $800m to Nigerian fraudster Dan Etete’

An agreement was struck under which Malabu would be paid to give up the licence, which would then be sold to Shell and the Italian oil company Eni.

17 Dec 2017

The Nigerian government is suing JP Morgan for $875m (£660m), alleging the Wall Street banking giant acted as the middleman in an illegal oil deal and made payments to a convicted money launderer.

Papers filed with the High Court in London claim that in 2011 the bank transferred money to a company controlled by Dan Etete, a former oil minister in the Nigerian government. He had previously been convicted of money laundering by French courts and is being pursued by Nigerian authorities. read more

Methane still leaking from the ground at site of Shell/Exxon gas explosion decades ago

NAM has also been in the news of late due to recent evidence implicating the company as the cause of small earthquakes impacting Groningen, a province just north of the former gas field.

December 29, 2017 by Bob Yirka, Phys.org

A team with members from several institutions in the Netherlands has found that the area around a site where a gas explosion occurred in 1965 is still emitting methane gas from the ground into the air. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their study of the area and the degree of hazard the gas leak poses.

Back in 1965 a team working for the Dutch Petroleum Company (NAM-a venture between Exxon and Shell) accidentally caused a natural gas explosion at a gas field in Sleen, East Drenthe (in a northeastern part of the Netherlands). The blowout turned the sand in the area to quicksand, and a sank and disappeared into the ground. After a period of time, the area was converted into a park. But now, the area is back in the news, because the researchers with this new effort have discovered that the site is still leaking methane. NAM has also been in the news of late due to recent evidence implicating the company as the cause of impacting Groningen, a province just north of the former gas field. read more

Leaked documents reveal how Shell blackmailed Nigeria in Malabu deal

29 December 2017

Confidential internal documents of Royal Dutch Shell suggest that the oil giant capitalised on the 2011 presidential election to arm-twist the federal government into a “cheap” deal over the sale of the disputed OPL 245.

The international oil company also used an arbitration case it filed with the International Centre for the Settlement of International Disputes (ICSID), an organ of the World Bank, to railroad the government into brokering truce between it and Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd, its estranged erstwhile partner and the original licensee. read more

New Arctic Well Spudded

Credit: BSEE: By =&0=&2017-12-27 18:15:55

Oil exploration in U.S. Arctic waters got underway this week with the spudding of a new oil well from the man-made Spy Island in the Beaufort Sea. Eni began drilling the new well off the north coast of Alaska, becoming the first company to do so since 2015.The well is expected to be over six miles (10 kilometers) long, and the project could result in oil production levels of 20,000 barrels a day. Eni is working with Royal Dutch Shell and plans to drill two exploration wells plus two potential sidetrack wells over the next two years. FULL ARTICLE read more

NAM Dutch Environmental Legacy not just Groningen Earthquakes

In February 1965 there was a explosive blowout at a NAM gas field in Sleen, East Drenthe – an agricultural area of the Netherlands. A whole drilling rig was swallowed in a quicksand lake created by the explosion.

Afterwards, NAM, the company responsible for the explosion all those years ago and the earthquakes now plaguing Groningen, converted the area into a park.

Unfortunately, scientists have discovered to their consternation that methane leaks have contaminated the local groundwater and there is a risk of further explosions. read more

OPL 245: When will Shell CEO Ben van Beurden be forced to resign?

Listen to wire-tapped call implicating Ben van Beurden in OPL 245 corruption cover-up. 

By John Donovan

  • Hear an admission by BvB that Shell had not been open with the U.S. Dept of Justice in regard to a related Shell Nigerian corruption scandal already subject to a 61 page Deferred Prosecution Agreement.
  • Concern expressed by BvB over potential share-price sensitive fallout, rather than the obvious priority of being open with shareholders as pledged in Shell’s claimed business principles. 
  • Express instruction from BvB to Simon Henry at the close of the call: “don’t volunteer any information that is not requested.” How can that be construed other than as potential obstruction of an investigation involving police and the other important authorities BvB mentions. Significantly, Simon Henry did not resist that unethical and perhaps criminal instruction. Even if material evidence was discovered internally at Shell, the unavoidable implication was that its existence should not be disclosed to the police. That order came from the very top. BvB has not made an apology or comment on his instruction. 
  • Inexplicably, both BvB and Simon Henry chuckled at times during the discussion. Perhaps a case of Shell shock at the dawn raid carried out at Shell HQ earlier that day by an army of 60 investigators, which triggered the call?

Listen and read the proof in audio and transcript form confirming  current Royal Dutch Shell CEO Ben van Beurden and then CFO colleague Simon Henry have both been infected with the deeply ingrained culture of cover-up adopted by successive Shell executive directors.

At the time of the incriminating wire-tapped telephone conversation in Feb 2016, a police dawn raid had just taken place at RDS HQ in The Hague searching for evidence in relation to the OPL 245 billion dollar Nigerian oil deal corruption scandal. read more

Shell/Exxon JV (NAM) has already paid over half a billion euros in compensation for Dutch earthquake damage

Earthquake damage to 80,000 homes in the Groningen Gas Field area of the Netherlands as a result of gas drilling activities by Shell and Exxon

Translated from an article published in Dutch language on 23 Dec 2017 by Het Financieele Dagblad.

Carel Grol • Entrepreneurship: 

How long will NAM still exist? 

“You have to ask that question to the shareholders.”

Gerald Schotman, director of the Dutch Petroleum Company (NAM), the company that pumps gas from the Groningen soil, has just been asked how long NAM can continue to do so. Does the company still have a future? Schotman: ‘I will never make a statement about whether or not gas extraction can take place.’

NAM is a company under oppression. The gas price is low and that is a burden on income. Meanwhile, the NAM has to pay for the earthquake damage in Groningen. So far, that has been slightly more than half a billion euros. That amount can only go one way in the coming years. Up. read more

Unseaworthy Shell North Sea Platform Lifeboats!

By a Retired Shell North Sea Platform Manager

The latest lifeboat incident in the North Sea Brent Alpha is very worrying indeed to everyone working offshore and in this case the remaining Shell operated platforms.

Brent Alpha is in the process of extensive decommissioning activities in preparation for the removal by the “Spirit of the Seas” in 2019.  

The problem with lifeboat release and retrieval systems has been know about many years before 2011 when the new IMO and SOLAS regulations were issued.  These regulations have to be complied with by July 2019 which applied retrospectively to all shipping and offshore mobile or fixed units..   read more

Shell and top managers are being prosecuted

The Dutch Public Prosecution Service is also investigating whether Shell and four (former) directors, including the current chairman of the board, Ben van Beurden, will be prosecuted for this corruption case. According to Professor of Business Ethics Wim Dubbink, the argument that corruption is inevitable in some countries is “morally and legally an invalid argument”.

Translated from an article published in Dutch language on 21 Dec 2017 by nrc.nl

Corruption

The lawsuit in Milan is about paying over one billion euros for a Nigerian oilfield by Shell and the Italian Eni.

  • Hester van Santen
  • Erik van der Walle
21 December 2017

Justice in Italy took a historic decision on Wednesday. Never before have a company with the size of Shell and such senior managers been sued by corruption. In addition to Shell, the Italian oil company Eni is being prosecuted for bribery in the purchase of an oil field in Nigeria six years ago.

Also (former) top executives of Eni and Shell are prosecuted in the case, including the current CEO of the Italian oil company Eni, Claudio Descalzi. Four former employees of Shell are also suspects, including former British board member Malcolm Brinded. read more

Shell is being charged with corruption in Nigeria

Shell employees at a borehole in Nigeria in 2002 where the oil comes from the ground and flows via pipes to terminals. Photo: Hollandse Hoogte / Sven Torfinn

…the crimes that would have taken place under the responsibility of Shell were carried out by Malcom Brinded, Peter Robinson, Guy Colegate and John Coplestone between autumn 2009 and 2 May 2014.

Translated from an article published in Dutch language on 20 Dec 2017 by Het Financieele Dagblad

Shell is being charged with corruption in Nigeria an Italian judge decided this afternoon. The lawsuit starts in Milan on 5 March.

In addition to Shell, the Italian oil and gas company Eni and its current CEO, Claudio Descalzi, and a number of former Shell directors are also being put on trial. The verdict follows after months of preliminary investigation and a number of hearings in Milan. read more

Shell, Eni Face Italian Charges Over Nigerian Deal -Update

By Eric Sylvers in Milan and Sarah Kent in London Features Dow Jones Newswires 

Royal Dutch Shell PLC, the chief executive of state-backed Italian energy company Eni SpA and other industry executives must stand trial on corruption charges connected to a 2011 Nigerian oil deal, an Italian judge ruled Wednesday.

The prosecution marks a rare case in which top oil executives could face jail time for corruption allegations.

Prosecutors say in court documents that Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi and the other executives at both Shell and Eni knew most of the $1.3 billion the companies paid to the Nigerian government to acquire the drilling rights would be distributed as bribes. Prosecutors say Goodluck Jonathan, the Nigerian president at the time of the deal, received part of the kickbacks. read more

Oil companies Shell and Eni to stand trial in Italy over Nigeria bribes

The two oil giants and key directors are to stand trial in what may be one of the biggest corruption cases in history. It relates to bribes paid in Nigeria for the purchase of an offshore oil block.

A judge in Milan has ordered Eni, Shell and current and former Eni directors to stand trial on accusations of corruption in the 2011 purchase of the OPL245 oil block in Nigeria estimated to hold 9 billion barrels of crude.

The CEO of Italian energy concern Eni since 2014 Claudio Descalzi, and his predecessor Paolo Scaroni are among 11 individuals indicted over the alleged bribes paid to secure the oil license for $1.3 billion (€1.09 billion).

The Italian company denied wrongdoing: “Eni’s Board of Directors has reaffirmed its confidence that the company was not involved in alleged corrupt activities in relation to the transaction,” according to a statement issued by the company on Wednesday. read more

Shell entangled in Nigerian bribery: Ex bosses at oil major set to stand trial in Italy

Oil majors Shell and Eni, and ex-bosses at both firms, are due to stand trial in Italy over alleged corruption over an £800million field in Nigeria.

Former Shell director Malcolm Brinded, 64, who was given a CBE in 2002 for services to the oil and gas industry, is among 15 accused, including Eni’s chief executive Claudio Descalzi.

Prosecutors say a large part of around £800million paid by Shell and Eni in 2011 was distributed as bribes.  read more

Eni, Shell To Stand Trial Over Alleged Corruption In Nigeria

By Tsvetana Paraskova – Dec 20, 2017, 11:30 AM CST

An Italian judge ordered on Wednesday oil majors Eni and Shell, as well as Eni’s CEO Claudio Descalzi and other former and present managers at Eni and Shell, to stand trialover alleged $1.3-billion corruption in an acquisition of an oil block in Nigeria back in 2011.

Giusy Barbara, a preliminary hearing judge at a Milan court, set the trial to begin on March 5, 2018, in Milan.

In February this year, Italian prosecutors asked for Eni, Shell, Descalzi, and ten others to stand trial over charges of alleged international corruption over alleged payment of US$1.3 billion in bribes to the former Nigerian government in 2011, for which Eni and Shell allegedly secured exclusive rights to develop the oil block OPL-245 offshore Nigeria. read more

Shell, Eni face corruption charges in corporate bribery case

December 20 at 12:28 PM MILAN — Shell and Eni as well as former and current executives will face trial over a $1.1 billion bribery scandal to take control of one of Africa’s most lucrative oil blocks in Nigeria, a judge in Milan ruled Wednesday.

Anti-corruption campaigners say the trial, which is set to open March 5, will be the biggest corporate bribery trial in history, citing the heft of the two major oil companies involved. In all, 15 individuals face charges, including Eni’s current and former CEOs.

According to Milan prosecutors, $520 million of the $1.1 billion paid into an escrow account was converted into cash and distributed as bribes, while several hundred-million more went to a former oil minister.

Both Anglo-Dutch Shell and Italy’s Eni issued separate statements denying wrongdoing and expressing confidence that the court would exonerate the individuals charged and the companies themselves. Both companies are also under investigation in the case in the Netherlands and face charges in Nigeria. read more

Italian Judge Orders Biggest Corporate Trial In History Against Shell, Eni, CEO And Executives Over Bribery Of Nigerian Government Officials

…face trial alongside four Royal Dutch Shell staff members including Malcolm Brinded CBE, former Executive Director for Upstream International and two former MI6 agents employed by Shell….The prosecutor further alleges that money was also channelled to Eni and Shell executives…

BY GLOBAL WITNESS: DEC 20, 2017

Royal Dutch Shell and Italian oil giant Eni have been ordered to stand trial in Milan on charges of aggravated international corruption for their role in a 2011 $1.1bn deal for Nigerian oil block OPL 245. Mrs Justice Barbara handed down the ruling today. The judge set March 5 as the date for the trial to begin.

Eni’s current CEO Claudio Descalzi, former CEO Paolo Scaroni, Chief Operations and Technology Officer Roberto Casula were also ordered to face trial alongside four Royal Dutch Shell staff members including Malcolm Brinded CBE, former Executive Director for Upstream International and two former MI6 agents employed by Shell. read more

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