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Cornflakes for Jihad: NASCO refutes story, says U.S Government cleared founder

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The management of NASCO Group Nigeria has said that the online publication which linked their founder, Dr Ahmed Nasreddin to the funding of terrorism is false.

NASCO disclosed this in a statement on Monday evening, coming after reports linked Nasreddin with laundering money for terrorist activities.

NASCO says in addition to the U.S Government clearing its founder, similar investigations were carried out by the National Intelligence Agency, which came to the same conclusion.

What they said

“After the unfortunate events of 2001, thousands of people and entities around the world were subjected to various investigations… a detailed examination by the United Nations Security Council and the US Government totally exonerated DR Ahmed Nasreddin, and his business interest of all false allegations… It was clearly established that NASCO was never at any time associated with sponsorship of terrorism directly or indirectly, anywhere in the world.”

They added that the Nigerian Government, through the National Intelligence Agency, carried out similar investigations and cleared their founder, also referencing a 2008 report to the Presidency.

NASCO says that at no time were their assets or any of their associated trade and commercial interests ever seized nor their accounts frozen due to any of those investigations; neither have they had business dealings with any of the other persons highlighted in the report.

What you should know

A report released last week by journalist David Hundeyin stated that NASCO’s founder, Dr Ahmed Nasreddin, had been funding and laundering money for terrorist groups including the GSPC, an Algerian terrorist group which other Nigerians allegedly linked to terrorism including Yakubu Katsina and Shahru Haruna, were also involved with at the exact same time. Hundeyin cited a US Treasury Department report which published a comprehensive account of how Nasreddin allegedly laundered and moved money around the world for terrorist entities.

The report said, “Like all very rich men, he appears to have a way around problems that would ground other people. In 2005, Lisa Myers and Aram Roston of the NBC News Investigative Unit discovered that despite his designation as a terror financier in the US, Nasreddin’s Nigerian business empire and his Italian hotel are still operating as normal. Quoted in the story, Victor Comras, a former terror-finance expert at the State Department says:

‘This isn’t a loophole, this is failure to implement the sanctions appropriately. He’s been involved in terrorist financing. Let’s put him out of business.’

“Just 2 years later in 2007, the LA Times publishes a story indicating that – to all intents and purposes – Nasreddin has cut some kind of deal with the US government, likely involving asset forfeitures, to get his name off the list of terror financiers. He has been indicted for funding terror, some of which has found its way into the lives of the Nigerian consumers who have made him fabulously wealthy, but he is off the hook.”

What you need to know about NASCO

NASCO Group is one of the largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods companies in the West Africa region. From their headquarters in Jos, Nigeria, the company manufactures and distributes a collection of popular brands (including NASCO Cornflakes and a wide range of NASCO biscuits) across the food and household sectors. The company started operations in Nigeria in 1963.

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