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Abacha theft case dropped as quid pro quo, says Nigeria

Nigerian leader Sani Abacha in Abuja in April of 1998Nigeria said on Thursday that it had dropped a case against a son of Sani Abacha after the late military dictator’s family withdrew a legal challenge in Europe. Liechtenstein said on Wednesday that it would return $227 million (167 million euros) to Nigeria, ending a protracted legal battle in the tiny European principality by four companies linked to Abacha’s family. General Abacha, who died in office, is suspected of having looted Nigeria’s central bank to the tune of $2.2 billion and the companies were ordered to pay back the cash in 2008. “As part of the negotiations to expedite the recovery of the funds, the Abachas agreed to discontinue their suit before the ECHR,” Nigeria’s finance ministry said in a statement.

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