Lagos- The Nigerian government is taking oil giants Shell and Eni to court in London, requesting the return of $1.1 billion as part of a case of alleged corruption dating back to 2011, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.
The Nigerian government alleges that the money was used by the companies to purchase an oil exploration license in the Gulf of Guinea but the money was used for bribes and kickbacks, according to the report.
The report adds that the government says that Shell and Eni were somewhat responsible for the fact that “corrupt Nigerian officials” used the money for personal enrichment.
The alleged corruption is part of a separate case in Milan, Italy, in which Nigeria is a civil party.
Both the companies have denied any wrongdoing or unlawful action.
Shell spokesperson said in a statement that in 2011 the deal was, “a fully legal transaction with Eni and the Federal Government of Nigeria”.
“Since this matter is before the Tribunal of Milan, it would not be appropriate for us to comment in detail on the new claims that have been made,” it said.
The Milan court sentenced two people in September considered to be closely involved in the case, to four-year sentences each.
Photo credit- www.newtelegraphng.com