Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nigeria to Interpol: Arrest Dick Cheney!

Julian Assange may be getting some unlikely company.

If Nigeria has its way, former Vice President Dick Cheney will be next on Interpol's international "wanted" alert, for bribery charges related to his time as the CEO of Halliburton.

Nigeria's anti-corruption agency says it plans to file charges against Cheney in connection with $180 million in bribes a Halliburton subsidiary paid to Nigerian officials to help secure a $1.2 billion contract during his tenure as head of the company. "We are filing charges against Cheney," Femi Babafemi, the country's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission chief, told Reuters today.

Halliburton admitted to the charges in a U.S. court last year and paid $579 million in civil penalties, but Cheney himself was not implicated.

Now, though, Nigerian officials want to try Cheney, and on their own turf at that. Apparently they plan to ask Interpol, the international police agency, to issue an alert for the former vice president in the next three days, similar to the one issued for WikiLeaks head Assange. The alert "will be issued and transmitted through Interpol," Godwin Obla, chief counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, told Bloomberg.

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