U.S. freezes $458 mln hidden by Nigerian ex-leader - prosecutors

by Reuters
Wednesday, 5 March 2014 19:27 GMT

WASHINGTON, March 5 (Reuters) - The United States has frozen more than $458 million that former Nigerian leader Sani Abacha and his conspirators obtained through corruption and hid in bank accounts around the world, the U.S. Justice Department said on Wednesday.

About $313 million were restrained in bank accounts in the Bailiwick of Jersey and $145 million were restrained in bank accounts in France, the department said in a statement.

Abacha died in 1998 at age 54. Nigeria has for years been fighting to recover his money, but companies linked to the Abacha family have gone to court to prevent repatriation.

(Reporting by David Ingram and Jonathan Stempel; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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