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Posts under ‘Peter Voser’

Keith Ruddock and the OPL 245 scandal

A few days ago, more than $43m (£34m) in cash (above) – proceeds of unidentified unlawful activity – was seized by the Nigerian anti-corruption authorities from a flat in Nigeria’s main city, Lagos. Is the find connected to OPL 245?

By John Donovan

The name of former Shell General Counsel Keith Ruddock (right) has popped up in leaked Shell internal emails relating to the OPL 245 corruption scandal. 

I note in this regard a comment by Mr Ruddock in an interview by GC Magazine:

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Can Shell CEO Ben van Beurden Survive OPL 245?

Amazing that after that experience, his reaction was to opt for the same cover-up culture/mentality of Shell senior management which led to Watts being escorted from Shell Centre in London by security staff.

By John Donovan

Ben van Beurden had no involvement in the $1.3bn OPL 245 corruption scandal until after he became Chief Executive Officer of Royal Dutch Shell Plc. He was not involved in the shady negotiations or the eventual deal.

Based on what he said in the surreptitiously recorded telephone conversation with his then-subordinate Simon Henry, the then Chief Executive of the company, he is, however, guilty of cover-up tactics and gross hypocrisy.

The intercepted call took place on the day that Shell’s Netherlands HQ was raided. The police spent hours searching his office and removed a folder of documents.

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Multinationals already working the angles on ‘Google Tax’

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“We are aware of taxpayers seeking to use artificial and contrived interim arrangements with the sole aim of avoiding a potential MAAL liability from January 1, 2016,” the ATO said in a taxpayer alert.

In 2014 Shell Australia paid $534 million in finance costs on $12.7 billion of debt owed to offshore Shell companies. But its submission to the Senate tax inquiry showed that while it paid that $169 million interest to a Bermuda associate, the biggest cost was $260.7 million paid to a Shell company in Luxembourg for cross-currency interest rate swap costs.

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Musings about the OPL 245 Shell/ENI corruption scandal and the sinking confidence in Prelude

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I would have thought that Simon Henry’s position as CFO should now be untenable, in view of the apparent lack of effective financial governance in Nigeria while he was CFO. 

By John Donovan

A large number of press articles have appeared recently mentioning Ben van Beurden. 

Since these articles are presumably fed to the press by Shell’s PR team, and Shell is not a one-man company, I checked to see whether other Shell directors have appeared recently in press releases.

The results are somewhat curious. For example, searching for Matthias Bichsel on Google News shows that articles were published about him at least weekly until October last year, but the articles then stopped abruptly. References to Simon Henry seem to have dried up a few weeks ago – until mid-March there were articles on Henry on an almost daily basis, but recently there has been nothing. Harry Brekelmans seems to have had a low profile since his appointment, so it is harder to see whether any change has occurred. Andy Brown has almost as many press articles as Ben van Beurden. 

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In defence of Shell CEO Ben van Beurden

By a regular contributor

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Only one member of the EC is directly involved in North American activities, Marvin Odum. 

Perhaps worth noting is that investment decisions on the scale of the recent Shell write-offs would have required approval by the entire EC in the Hague long before BvB was around. Few of the EC members who made those decisions are still present. 

It seems strange that so many of the huge projects which have been abandoned are in North America, and serious questions need to be asked about why approval was given by the EC for these huge projects. Only one member of the EC is directly involved in North American activities, Marvin Odum. 

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Shell Will Struggle to Overcome Oil Price Crash, say Analysts

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Stephen Simko, CFA: 26 October 2015

Even when oil prices were $100 a barrel, Shell’s (RDSB) portfolio was strewn with problems. Huge bets on shale destroyed huge amounts of capital, and the company’s upstream resource base has few growth options with strong economics, the low-cost Brazilian oil it is acquiring from BG (BG.) is the one major exception.

The company’s chronically poorly performing downstream also has been a consistent drag on returns on capital. Even though significant restructuring actions have begun under new CEO Ben van Beurden, the recent collapse in oil prices adds considerable pressure that we think the company will struggle mightily to overcome. After all, Shell’s issues of poor execution and capital efficiency predate even ex-CEO Peter Voser, who was responsible for a lot of the poor recent strategic choices.

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PETER VOSER JOINS ANOTHER SCANDAL RIDDEN COMPANY 

By John Donovan

A posting today on our Shell Blog…Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 17.05.41

When Peter Voser’s departure as CEO was announced, it was explained that Peter wanted time for his family, hobbies and to give back to society. Today it was announced that he’s being proposed as Chairman of ABB (his previous employer) and he also took a directorship at a Singaporean Sovereign Invetsment house some months ago. This makes his departure story look suspicious. Maybe the board was aware that he overpaid for unconventional acreage in the USA and that his China adventures were quickly going nowhere but down. Is it time for the RDS board to be a bit more forthcoming with its justification?

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Irish Police reopen and expand investigation into Shell corruption case?

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 23.00.33By John Donovan

According to an insider source, the Irish Police Garda Ombudsman Commission has reopened and expanded an investigation into evidence of corruption surrounding the Corrib Gas Project in Ireland.

I understand that this development was prompted by new evidence published on this website in relation to the whistleblower Irish company OSSL. Its directors have admitted distributing bribes on behalf of the Shell led project consortium.

This apparent development seems to be at odds with a statement issued by the Irish Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald, in the Irish Parliament on 4 December 2014.

OSSL strenuously denies allegations that it has attempted to blackmail Shell and its project partners, Statoil and Vermilion. Shell has provided written proof that it has received hundreds of money demands from OSSL for the alcohol.

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Shell’s disdain for its governing constitution, Shell Business Principles

Screen Shot 2014-12-02 at 17.24.15By John Donovan

A few days ago I published an article pointing out that the Shell Business Principles document, proclaiming Shell’s core values and setting out the ethical platform on which Royal Dutch Shell supposedly operates, is conspicuously out of date.

The version published on shell.com still bears the name of Peter Voser who resigned as Shell CEO in controversial circumstances a year ago.

The document is accessible in multiple languages on shell.com. Those in Dutch, Chinese, German, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Thai, Turkish and Vietnamese – are all signed by Peter Voser.

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OSSL BLACKMAIL PLOT AGAINST SHELL

Screen Shot 2014-11-16 at 23.49.54To its credit Shell has not given in to the subsequent money demands, but neither has it apparently reported the matter to the Irish Police. One can see the difficulty. How do you go about asking the Irish police to investigate a blackmail plot over free alcohol worth over €35,000 given to the Irish Police accused of being “Shell’s Cops” and acting brutally towards people protesting against the controversial project?

JOHN DONOVAN EMAIL TO SUPERINTENDENT PATRICK DISKIN OF THE IRISH POLICE, THE GARDA

From: John Donovan <[email protected]>
Subject: OSSL BLACKMAIL PLOT AGAINST SHELL

Date: 16 November 2014 20:43:08 GMT
Cc: [email protected], Ed Vulliamy <[email protected]>, Lorna Siggins <[email protected]>, Dan Griffin <[email protected]>, Áine Ryan <[email protected]>, Paul O’Donoghue <[email protected]>, “Boucher-Hayes, Philip” <[email protected]>, Olga Cronin <[email protected]>, Erlend Skarsaune <[email protected]>
To: [email protected]

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OSSL Blackmail Plot Against Shell?

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By John Donovan

Since 22 October 2014 I have been updating an article posing the question: “Shell being blackmailed?”

Top people at Royal Dutch Shell  have all spoken directly to a director of a former Shell “Mr Fixit” company in Ireland, OSSL, which has bombarded Shell with money demands to settle a dispute that Shell says it has already settled.

To be specific, Desmond Kane of OSSL has spoken in person to Peter Voser, Ben van Beurden, Jorma Ollila, Michiel Brandjes, Michael Crothers (and other senior people at Shell).

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Objection to Divestment of Shell Oil Blocks in Ogoniland

Screen Shot 2014-10-26 at 00.39.59National Union of Ogoni Students’ USA

3747 W. 138TH Street, Crestwood Illinois 60445, Tel. 1-(888) 610-5590, email – [email protected]

Press Release

10/25/2014

CAVERT EMPTOR: Divestment of Shell Oil Blocks: Oil Mining License 11 not for sale

We, the Ogoni students in Diaspora under the National Union of Ogoni Students’ (NUOS INTL), USA on behalf of the Ogoni people, distance ourselves from the ongoing Shell Oil Company’s secret divestment and sale of assets in oil and gas in Nigeria. These secret sales should not extend to Oil Mining License (OML) 11 in Ogoni its enclave.

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