June 04, 2007

Big Nigerian Scam Operator Busted

US Representative William Jefferson
No, I'm not talking about the widow of the late Nigerian Army Colonel Obumbo who has $30 million in a secret bank account and needs your bank routing numbers to get it to America. No handsome share of the loot will be forthcoming to anyone scammed by Louisiana Representative William "Cool Cash" Jefferson. The bum was finally indicted for a raft of crimes far worse than the Nigerian e-mail scams:
The indictment handed up in federal court in Alexandria., Va., Monday is 94 pages long and lists 16 alleged violations of federal law that could keep Jefferson in prison for up to 235 years. He is charged with racketeering, soliciting bribes, wire fraud, money-laundering, obstruction of justice, conspiracy and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Jefferson is accused of soliciting bribes for himself and his family, and also for bribing a Nigerian official.

Almost two years ago, in August 2005, investigators raided Jefferson's home in Louisiana and found $90,000 in cash stuffed into a box in his freezer.
The impact of the case has stretched across continents and even roiled presidential politics in Nigeria. According to court records, Jefferson told associates that he needed cash to pay bribes to the country's vice president, Atiku Abubakar.

Abubakar denied the allegations, which figured prominently in that country's presidential elections in April. Abubakar ran for the presidency and finished third.

The indictment does not name Abubakar. But it describes Jefferson's dealings with an unnamed "Nigerian Official A" who was a high-ranking official in Nigeria's executive branch who had a spouse in Potomac, Md. One of Abubakar's wives lived in that Washington suburb.

Court records indicate that Jefferson was videotape taking a $100,000 cash bribe from an FBI informant. Most of that money later turned up in a freezer in Jefferson's home.
Of course, as his friends will point out, an indictment isn't a conviction. The poor chump still claims he is innocent. He just likes to keep his money in the freezer. Its a free country, ain't it?

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