Arms scandal: German businessman in EFCC custody

Arms scandal: German businessman in EFCC custody
January 06 12:44 2016

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a German businessman for alleged involvement in the $2.1 billion arms procurement scandal for which former National Security Adviser, Col Sambo Dasuki (rtd) is in custody.

The unnamed German was arrested because EFCC detectives discovered in the course of their investigations that he allegedly benefitted from the funds illegally.

Our source in the EFCC said the German was arrested on Monday last week in Abuja to make clarifications on his role in the whole saga.

The source confirmed as at Wednesday morning that the suspect was still in their custody.

It was learnt that he was picked up a week after a serving colonel of the Nigerian Army, who served as the Military Assistant to Dasuki was invited for questioning in relation to the arms scandal.

EFCC operatives were said to have traced his financial transactions to Belarus, a former Soviet republic, which featured prominently as a theatre of training and related security events during the campaign against Boko Haram under former President Goodluck Jonathan

“There is this foreigner that is being detained by the EFCC over the arms deal controversy. He has spent over a week in the cell. He was picked up on December 28, 2015 and has been in detention since then.

“He is being detained because he was involved in some of the security deals with the military officer, who is being detained as a result of the same arms issue.

“They paid him a huge sum in dollars but he is believed to have spent a fraction of the money on the training (of troops); so, they are grilling him on how to get the remaining amount from him,” the source added.

It would be recalled the EFCC had commenced investigation into the training of Nigerian Special Forces in the Eastern European country in November, 2015.

The EFCC task force, constituted to investigate arms procurement under the Jonathan administration is probing how millions of dollars meant for the training of the 750 Special Forces in Belarus and other countries in Eastern Europe were spent.

The operatives are of the suspicion that huge amount of funds released for the training contract were not judiciously spent.

It was gathered that the former NSA and the top hierarchy of the nation’s security structure came up with a policy to train an elite force, comprising well-trained operatives from the various security forces, to combat the Boko Haram insurgents in 2014.

The beneficiaries, drawn from the Army, the Air Force, the Navy, the Police and the Department of State Services, received training in counter-terrorism, counter-insurgency, handling of different calibre of firearms and grenades among others.