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A new revelation about Shell in Nigeria shows that oil trade always makes dirty hands

Google translation of an extensive OPL 245 article published in Dutch. Cannot guarantee that all the links work. Listen here to the unprincipled notorious BvB/Simon Henry wiretapped phone call. Instruction given to withhold information from the police and Shell shareholders. (Currently conversation 9 down from the top)

Jelmer Mommer, Correspondent Climate & Energy

27 October 2017

In 2011, Shell concluded a deal to win oil for the Nigerian coast. Of that, a condemned money launderer benefited – with the knowledge of Shell. Free Netherlands publishes a new reconstruction about the case this week, based on a file of thousands of pages, internal emails, reports and listened calls.

In the amazing documentary Here was the unforgettable film about oil, corruption and capitalism. Here was the unforgettable film about oil, corruption and capitalism. Big Men, says a member of a small American oil company doing business in Ghana: “The oil business is a team sport.”

That sentence was long in my mind. In the film, we see how the men of the Texan oil company Kosmos Energy try to exploit a large oilfield on the coast of Ghana. There must be continuous civil servants and ministers so that eventually the oil can flow.

The movie taught me: oil is always political. If you are to be licensed as an oil company, then you must become friends and, if necessary, defend your interests, especially if a country is politically unstable or corrupt. A new regime can just revoke your license, and then you are in empty hands.

Oil workers in a corrupt country = making dirty hands

This happened exactly with the OLP245 license, which Shell first acquired in Nigeria in 2000. For years, there was a tug of war between the Nigerian government, Shell and a local oil company about whom the ‘OPL 245 is a piece of sea in the Gulf of Guinea south of the Niger Delta; 1945 square kilometers, almost as large as the province of North Holland, with depths up to 2400 meters, “writes Vrij Nederland. “Under the seabed is an oil lake with an estimated 9 billion barrels and the dazzling value of $ 450 billion – at the current oil price.” Here you read the UN research. for the Nigerian coast to launch, so Shell lost the license again. In 2011 Shell again closed a deal: it would exploit OLP245 with the Italian oil company ENI.

The material shows how Shell tried to do business with a convicted money launderer from the headquarters in The Hague – without making dirty hands.

The deal was criticized by the Nigerian parliament in February 2014. It was “a very poor agreement” that is “not in national interest” and even “against Nigerian law.”

In April this year, Shell became involved when BuzzFeed released the news on Sunday with the Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore: ‘How one of the world’s largest oil companies secured a $ 1.3 billion deal mired in corruption allegations.’ New leaked material showed how far the company went to get the license. Up to the highest levels of Shell, it was known that a convicted laundering was done in order to get OLP245 in hand.

This week Vrij Nederland will publish a new reconstruction about the case. Journalist Harm Ede Botje received a hard disk with nine gigabyte information – “thousands of pages of internal emails, reports, and listened calls.”

The new material shows how Shell tried to do business with a condemned detergent at the headquarters in The Hague – without making dirty hands.

How far Shell was going to get rid of a corrupt former oil minister

The battle for the license was first described in January 2015 by research journalist Sanne Terlingen in magazine Here’s the piece from OneWorld: ‘Whitewash with Shell’s help.’ OneWorld. On the basis of research with Nigerian journalist Idris Akinbajo, Terlingen described the tribute to the oil field and deal that Shell closed to win the oil.

The investigation of the two revealed that Shell knew that a large part of the purchase price paid to the Nigerian government returned to the corrupt former oil minister and businessman Dan Etete.

Etete had assigned the oil field to his own oil company Malabu, and had to be bought out. Shell and ENI drew up a deal with the money – $ 1.1 billion – transferred to a bill from the Nigerian government in London. What happened after that? The oil companies had been so full that they did not know.

But from The British Investigators of Finance Uncovered and Global Witness released this report on the deal. Material published in April reveals that Shell knew that most of the money – $ 1.092 billion – would be owned by Etete, who would use the weather to pay bribes.

In one of the leaked e-mails, a Shell employee wrote that Etete Source: Global Witness Report, p. 10 They also discussed ways to sprout the former oil minister, for example, by taking him on deer hunting in Scotland. Etete had already been sentenced for money laundering in France.

For the scenes, Shell acted as if it had concluded a deal with the Nigerian government. Behind the scenes, two special employees, former spies of the UK secret service MI6, switched a deal with Etete.

The payment structure with the London bill was no more than The Guardian wrote about the deal in March and conducted a fixer that described the financial structure as a “condom.” a “condom,” a person concerned, a protection structure that had to create a distance between Western oil companies and the corrupt Nigerian.

What shows the reconstruction of Free Netherlands

The The full story of UN can be read at Blendle. New reconstruction of Free Netherlandsshows that Shell was deliberately in favor of this construction:

  • The company’s top did not choose exactly what would happen to the money. In a mandatory ‘book survey’ that preceded the deal, Shell ‘In a non-dated document with the subject’ due diligence Malabu ‘, it is stated in the first sentence that the book research is limited to the question of who was the owner of the company, an investigation at the local Chamber of Commerce.Nowhere in the section and in the hundreds of e-mails are mentioned the need for research into potential risks of corrupt practices. It is never asked whether a deal with Malabu is allowed under Nigerian law. According to local legislation, all proceeds from oil sales must flow into the state treasury. ‘ Read in UN: ‘Corrupt Constructions.’ while according to its own Code of Conduct .
  • Peter Robinson, Vice President of Sub-Saharan Africa for Shell, explicitly stated in an email that he had found “an alternative structure” to transfer the money. He targets the two-stage racket – the condom, as you want – that created a distance between the oil companies and Etete.

When you read the reconstruction in UN , you get the feeling that the Shelltop became blind to the risks when the purchase of the oilfield was so close.“We need to act quickly because the wolves circle,” wrote topman Malcolm Brinded on October 11, 2010 to Robinson.

Rus Ednan Agaev, who negotiated on OPL245 on behalf of Etete, said: “The Shell summit closed a close eye and did not want any contact with Etete.”But, so, knew exactly what was going on. Eni decided That wrote Peter Robinson on March 31, 2011 in an email, where UN reports.Source: This is stated in the UN story: ‘Corrupt constructions.’ and went into it.

The newly-leaked emails are “not helpful”

How we all know this? Because Shell and ENI are now being prosecuted in Italy for the deal. During the lawsuit, more and more material becomes public. UN received a large part of the file filed by the Italian judiciary.

The most sophisticated so far is a phone call between Shell CEO Ben van Beurden and his (now deprived) financial chief executive Simon Henry. The two discuss an invasion in their office in The Hague by the Dutch detective service FIOD and the Public Prosecutor. Those were brought into action at the request of the Italian prosecutor.

Follow the Money published the whole phone call.

The phone call is evident: Van Beurden and Henry are relaxed, they do not wake up with the impression that they have something to hide or that they want to cover something punishable. At the same time, they are aware that material may come out, which is, in the words of Van Beurden, The New York Times wrote this brief summary of the deal and the leaked material. is not helpful.

He addresses e-mails from the old spies that Shell hired, which clearly shows that Shell negotiated with Etete and knew he would benefit from the deal.Such mails were also forwarded to top executives in the company, including Peter Voser.

‘Office buildings in Abuja, a shopping mall in Dubai, five c-class Mercedessen, two Range Rovers and three Chevrolet buses’

Until April 2017, Shell always said that payments to Etetes Oil Company Malabu ‘were done without [Shells] knowledge, permission or Source: YahooNews: ‘Eni, Shell deny wrongdoing in Nigeria after allegations of improper payment’ But now Shell has Reuters: ‘Shell says it knew some payments for Nigeria’s oilfield would go to Malabu’ that it knew that the $ 1,1 billion that it paid to the Nigerian government would be used BBC: ‘Shell admits dealing with money launderer’ to buy Etete. The only way to break the deadlock over the license was to negotiate with On the website of Global Witness, you can read Etete’s response to the allegations. Etete and Malabu, according to Shell.

The question is whether it could have been different. Shell could also have seen a deal about the Nigerian oilfield, would you say. But the oil business is a team sport, and once you play it may be impossible to get out again.

The biggest deputy is the Nigerian citizen. That was missing $ 1.1 billion – money that could have gone to education, care and infrastructure instead of a corrupt former minister.

Thanks to the documents of the Italian justice, we know what has been bought, among other things: ‘Office buildings in the Nigerian capital Abuja, a shopping mall in Dubai, five c-class Merced, two Range Rovers and three Chevrolet buses, one armored Cadillac and a Global Jet Bombardier Vision 6000 [a private jet] of $ Source: UN: ‘Corrupt Structures’

At the beginning of November, the Italian investigator decided whether Shell and ENI should be prosecuted.

(Currently conversation number 9 down from the top)
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