An investigative report has revealed that the current Kebbi State Governor, Abubakar Bagudu allegedly did some time in a prison in the United States of America while awaiting extradition for alleged money laundering deals.
The report also stated that he was deeply enmeshed in money laundering by helping “the Sani Abacha family to steal from Nigeria in the 1990s”.
The report by Premium Times in collaboration with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) a nonprofit newsroom and network of journalists centered in Washington, D.C., tagged the Pandora Papers on Tuesday laid bare a global entanglement of political power and secretive offshore finances and dealings.
The report which did not state whether he was ever convicted, said the Kebbi governor was allegedly imprisoned in the United States over crimes of laundering funds for the late Abacha.
“Between 1998, when Abacha suddenly died, and 2020, 3.6 billion U.S. dollars have been recovered from the Abacha family and Bagudu.
The 163 million U.S. dollars recovery from Jersey in 2003 directly involved Mr Bagudu, who then negotiated a deal with the U.S. and Jersey to return the funds to Nigeria in exchange for Jersey’s withdrawal of an extradition request and his free return to Nigeria.
“He spent six months in American federal prison in Houston while awaiting extradition to Jersey. The deal to return the $163 million was to avoid that extradition,” the report stated.
According to the report by Premium Times, Bagudu was allegedly involved in a web of schemes designed to aid the late Head of State, General Sani Abacha launder billions of dollars belonging to Nigeria into foreign bank accounts.
“Bagudu is long known to have played an instrumental role in the Abacha conspiracy to steal and launder billions of dollars belonging to Nigeria. But how he set up complicated structures of secrecy to hide stolen money as well as the role of his enablers, including prestigious British law firms and Serious Organised Crimes Agency (SOCA) the predecessor of the National Crimes Agency (NCA) has never been crystal clear,” the report stated.
It further detailed how “Blue Holdings Trust, registered in Cooks Island” was established with the “beneficiaries of each of the family trusts and the corresponding investments domiciled in London were Mr Bagudu, his wife, seven children, and his brother, Ibrahim.”
Neither the governor, not.his media handlers have issued any an official response over these allegations.