South Africa Seizes Another $5.7 Million From Nigeria 

The South African Asset Forfeiture Unit of the National Prosecuting Authority, NPA, said Monday that it had seized $5.7 million for yet another arms deal by Nigerian.

The transaction was said to be between Cerberus Risk Solutions, an arms broker in Cape Town, and Societe D’Equipments Internationaux, a Nigerian company based in Abuja.

This is the second multimillion-naira arms deal involving Nigeria that would go awry and earn an investigation by authorities in South Africa.

In September, $9.3million in $100 bills stashed in suitcases was seized from two Nigerians and an Israeli acting for the Nigerian government at Lanseria Airport, north of Johannesburg.

According to a South African based paper, City Press, the deal fell apart after Cerberus which had earlier received R60 million (N1.02 billion) from Nigeria in its account at Standard Bank, tried to repay the money as it could not resolve its registration formalities with the South African authorities.

The bank became suspicious after Cerberus tried to pay the money back to the Nigerian company.

Cerberus, it was gathered, was previously registered as a broker with the National Conventional Arms Control Committee, NCACC, but the registration expired in May this year. The marketing and contracting permits also expired at the same time.

The company had applied for re-registration and must have tried to pay the money back to the Nigerian company after it failed to renew its registration




     

     

    The report said the NPA’s Asset Forfeiture Unit subsequently obtained a court order in the South Gauteng High Court to seize the money but the NPA spokesperson Nathi Mncube, said there were no indications the two transactions (the first deal of $9.3million and the latest) were related.

    Mncube was quoted as saying: “However, both are now the subject of a criminal investigation and all possible information and connections are being investigated.”

    Under South African laws, a person entering or leaving the country is expected to carry cash not exceeding US$2,300, or the equivalent in foreign currency notes.

    The news of the first $9.3 million transaction was trailed by controversy as the Nigerian government claimed it was behind the arms deal and had acted out of desperation for arms to defeat Boko Haram.

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