May 25, 2021
By Jeremy Logan
American prosecutors say Chad’s former ambassador to the United States and Canada, along with his ex-deputy, face bribery and money laundering charges allegedly involving a Canadian energy startup company.
In a news release on Monday, the U.S. Justice Department says according to court documents a $2 million bribe was allegedly solicited from the unnamed company before the payment was laundered in the U.S. financial system to hide its true nature.
The bribe is alleged to have been in exchange for help obtaining oil rights in Chad.
Officials allege in addition to the $2 million payment, shares in the startup were also transferred to the diplomats’ wives and a third Chadian individual as part of the bribe.
The Justice Department says the founding shareholder of the Canadian company pleaded guilty in 2019 to one count of conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and forfeited $27 million.
It says the alleged scheme happened between August 2009 and July 2014 while the two diplomats were based at the Embassy of Chad in Washington.