Thursday, 27 March 2014

Caught on Camera: This Nigerian Embassy Worker can Smuggle Stolen Goods out of the UK in Diplomatic Bags




An international undercover investigation filmed by ITV's Exposure has exposed a worker at the Nigeria High Commission (NHC) who claimed he could transport items, including stolen art, out of "any airport" using his diplomatic connections!

Posing as a criminal gang, the Exposure team, led by reporter Mark Williams-Thomas, met Alfa Abutu, in a London hotel. Abutu told them that he could transport their stolen art to Paris.

"Give me your suitcase, this suitcase usually has to be wrapped with the national flag before we can move it anywhere. And we use diplomatic vehicle whereby the police authorities will not stop us," Abutu said.



Exposure later told Abutu the art was worth nearly £1 million, to which he suggested a commission of £250,000. In a series of meetings with undercover reporters, Abutu also claimed he could help transfer money, and smuggle diamonds and gold out of the country using an embassy car and its associated privileges.

"The easiest way is that, let's say this box is loaded with $1 million and they are going out with it or gold, or diamond. With my link, we use a diplomatic vehicle from here straight to Heathrow or Gatwick," he said."They will not open the box they are bringing out. It's not a problem."

After Abutu later foubd out it was a fake deal, and was asked to comment on Exposure's findings, Abutu denied any wrongdoing and said he had never been involved in criminal activities. He said he is local staff, not a diplomat, doesn't have diplomatic immunity and couldn't have assisted the Exposure team to move an item. He turned around to say he believed Exposure's undercover reporter was not genuine, so he decided to play along with him.



However, following the revelations, the Nigeria High Commission immediately suspended Abutu from his position in the accounts department, where he had worked for six years, saying it "utterly condemns Mr Abutu's conduct". Spokesman Ahmed Inusa said:

[The Commission] supports the press and the media in their good work to expose embassy workers…who either pose as diplomats with a view to committing criminal acts for financial gains or diplomats who abuse their diplomatic privileges for any reason. The Mission thanks ITV staff in particular, for the good work they have done.

During its investigation, Exposure uncovered that while Abutu did have diplomatic links, he was not a diplomat and his claims of diplomatic immunity were false. The case has however, provoked concern that diplomatic privileges are open to widespread abuse - whether via smuggling contraband in and out of the UK, or using immunity to evade criminal prosecution.
Watch the embarrassing video here ---> http://www.itv.com/news/2014-03-26/caught-on-camera-embassy-worker-who-says-he-can-smuggle-stolen-goods-out-of-the-uk-in-diplomatic-bags/



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