This is a mistake that could cost Israeli businessman Dan Gertler dearly. In an arbitration proceeding, the latter used a document indicating that he handed over nearly $ 380 million in bribes to Congolese officials.
with our special correspondent in Kinshasa, Sonia Rolley
This is in fact what the investigators from the British Serious Fraud Office (SFO), who for several years have been investigating certain mining transactions carried out in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) by the Kazakh company ERG, report to the Swiss authorities.
The case was revealed by Bloomberg and Africa Confidential, but the basis for the information comes from a ruling by the Swiss Federal Criminal Court, online on the federal court’s website. The names of companies and individuals are replaced by the letters A, B, C.
This judgment explains why SFO submitted a request in 2019 to the Swiss court to obtain the documents from a company that can be linked to a money laundering network that functioned specifically during the 2000s in the DRC. The company that targeted the British International Letter Treaty tried to block it, thus revealing the whole deal.
To justify their request for legal aid, British investigators revealed to the Swiss authorities that they had evidence that 379 million bribes had been paid to Congolese officials by a businessman nicknamed C in the verdict.
Bloomberg and Africa Confidential identified him as Israeli businessman Dan Gertler based on details in that verdict but also with other sources. Joseph Kabila is introduced as President M. It would be Dan Gertler himself. in the context of arbitration in Israel, whose debates usually remain confidential. This time some documents were handed over to SFO.
It contains the names of Congolese officials to whom he is alleged to give bribes to obtain mining contracts and even the amounts. The businessman tried to prove that he had had a lot of expenses and had not earned as much money as two of his former employees and the plaintiff in the case, had claimed.
Read also: Oil in the Democratic Republic of Congo: “Dan Gertler had received these blocks under very opaque conditions”