A former Minister of Petroleum in Nigeria, Dan Etete, has had his request for $85 million returned to him rejected by a British judge.
Justice Edis of the Southwark Crown Court rejected a request by Etete to have $85 million returned to his company, Malabu Oil and Gas.
The said amount was transferred to Malabu by the Jonathan adminstration following the sale of one of Nigeria’s richest oil blocs, OPL 245.
The sale of the oil bloc to Shell and ENi and the subsequent transfer of $1 billion to Malabu has been mired in allegations of corruption.
The $85 million requested by Etete’s Malabu represents the last installment of the transfer and was seized at the request of Italian prosecutors.
Malabu’s request for the release of the seized sum was denied by the judge on the grounds of possible fraud as Italian authorities continue to investigate Shell and ENi.