British oil company Soco International paid $42,000 (£27,000) to a Congolese military officer who allegedly tried to bribe opponents of its oil exploration in Africa’s oldest national park, according to a leading NGO.
Leaked documents released by Global Witness ahead of the company’s annual meeting in London appear to show Soco paid military liaison officer Major Burimbi Feruzi as it sought to search for oil in the Virunga national park.
Feruzi has been caught on camera in the filming of the Leonardo DiCaprio-backed, Oscar-nominated documentary Virunga, offering a $3,000 bribe to a senior park ranger. Company officials have previously denied paying him, saying Feruzi was a government military liaison officer assigned to them.
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