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Nigerian Lawsuit Revives Billion-Dollar Oil Scandal

Nigeria's anti-corruption agency is reviving a five-year-old scandal involving one of Africa's richest oil blocs.

The King of Ogale, King Okpab, shows a picture taken near the Ogale area in Nigeria as he speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in London, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016. Britain’s High Court will begin hearing lawsuits on Tuesday filed by the Ogale and Bille people alleging that decades of oil spills have fouled the water and destroyed the lives of thousands of fishermen and farmers in the Niger River Delta. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
The King of Ogale, King Okpab, shows a picture taken near the Ogale area in Nigeria as he speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in London, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016. Britainโ€™s High Court will begin hearing lawsuits on Tuesday filed by the Ogale and Bille people alleging that decades of oil spills have fouled the water and destroyed the lives of thousands of fishermen and farmers in the Niger River Delta. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) โ€” Nigeria's anti-corruption agency is reviving a five-year-old scandal involving one of Africa's richest oil blocs, in which a former petroleum minister and his allies allegedly made $1.1 billion and the state oil company $210 million.

The agency filed suit this week charging former petroleum minister Dan Etete, former justice minister Mohammed Adoke and businessman Aliyu Abubakar with fraud and money laundering of hundreds of millions of dollars in the sale of Malibu OPL 245 bloc.

The lawsuit says the money was transferred from a Nigerian escrow account at the London branch of JPMorgan Chase.

The money was proceeds of a deal brokered by Adoke in 2011 to resolve an ownership dispute involving British-Dutch oil multinational Shell, Italian Agip, Etete's Malabu Oil, Abubakar's Rocky Top Resources and Nigeria's state oil company.

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