The William Jefferson Chronicles

'God has shamed the devil and cleared the innocent,' former Nigerian official says after William Jefferson verdict
by The Times-Picayune
Sunday August 09, 2009, 3:00 AM

Prosecutors weren't the only ones proclaiming victory after the jury convicted former Rep. William Jefferson last week. So did former Nigerian Vice President Atiku Abubakar, who, according to the Justice Department, was the intended recipient of $100,000 in cash ultimately found in the freezer of Jefferson's Washington home.

The jury, while finding Jefferson guilty of bribery, racketeering and honest services fraud, acquitted him of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the charge mostly closely related to the money in the freezer. According to Abubakar, that verdict shows he never discussed the payment of bribes to facilitate a telecommunications project in Nigeria that Jefferson was championing. "I am glad that the judgment has confirmed that I had no improper relationship with him, " Abubakar said in a written statement. "God has shamed the devil and cleared the innocent.' "

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