Nigeria drops corruption charges against Dick Cheney

Halliburton, oil firm Cheney used to run, has agreed to pay $250 mn in fines.

London: Nigeria has dropped corruption charges against former US vice-president Dick Cheney, after Halliburton, the oil firm he used to run, agreed to pay USD 250 million in fines, according to reports.

The bribe scandal concerned the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in southern Nigeria.

Cheney, who was chief executive of Halliburton between 1995 and 2000, and three other bosses were last week charged with bribery by Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), The Telegraph reports.

The company itself and four related businesses were also charged. It is alleged that bribes were paid to Nigerian officials to secure contracts for the construction of a liquefied natural gas plant in the Niger delta.

Nigerian newspapers reported on Wednesday that the charges had been dropped after a deal was struck with help from George HW Bush, the former US president.

EFCC spokesman Femi Babafemi said: “They have made offers of fines to be paid in penalties. They offered to pay USD 120 million in addition to the repatriation of USD 130 million trapped in Switzerland."

He reportedly added: “I can tell you authoritatively that an agreement has been reached.”

James Baker, the former secretary of state, was also said to have intervened in the negotiations.