These are two intermediaries who are struggling in the nets of American justice, a Chinese and a Senegalese. Their actions, between 2014 and 2016, could shed light on the meteoric rise of a young Chinese oil champion, the CEFC group. The case could also provide information on the methods of the company to quickly rise among the major players in the black gold. Planetary ambitions, contrasting with the discretion of his boss, the mysterious Ye Jianming.
The first middleman, Patrick Ho, 68, appeared on Monday, January 8, in front of a New York court. Accused of corruption, he pleaded not guilty. Former secretary inside Hong Kong (2002-2007), it is he who would have recruited the Senegalese Cheikh Tidiane Gadio, former foreign minister, for 400 000 dollars (340 000 euros).
The latter reportedly played with his relations with Chadian President Idriss Déby. At the time, another Chinese oil company operating in Chad, Petrochina, was fined $ 1.2 billion for violating environmental law. Despite this, CEFC, to gain access to Chadian oil, wants to join the giant Chinese state already present on the spot, and undertakes to settle the scramble. Mr. Ho then uses the services of Mr. Gadio, well connected to N'Djamena. On their initiative, CEFC undertakes to pay a bribe of $ 2 million to Chadian President Idriss Deby, presented as a "gift to a charitable cause" .
Mr. Ho's application for provisional release was refused despite his defense's proposal to fix the bond at $ 10 million. For his part, Mr. Gadio will be under house arrest under GPS control near Washington. His lawyers evoke "settlement talks" . The trial is not expected to begin until 2019. By then, US justice wants to analyze hundreds of thousands of documents, records of …