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US DOJ subpoenas Glencore over Nigeria, DRC, Venezuela operations

Glencore PLC said July 3 that its Glencore Ltd. subsidiary received a subpoena from the U.S. Department of Justice to produce documents over its business dealings in Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Venezuela, beginning in 2007 to the present.

The Swiss commodities trader said it will review the subpoena, which was related to the the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and the country's money laundering statutes.

Over this year alone, Glencore has faced multiple cases over its operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including its Kamoto Copper Co. SARL and Mutanda Mining Sarl operations.

The trader settled a legal spat with Democratic Republic of the Congo state miner Gécamines SA, covering their Kamoto Copper joint venture, as well as resolved the capital deficiency of the joint venture by converting US$5.60 billion of its total debt of about US$9 billion into new shares, with majority of the debt owed to Glencore.

Glencore subsidiaries Mutanda Mining and Kamoto Copper also settled a dispute with Dan Gertler-affiliated Ventora Development Sasu and Africa Horizons Investment Ltd. over unpaid royalties, in order to avoid the risk of the seizure of its assets.

Meanwhile, Congolese-American businessman Charles Brown is seeking US$1.14 billion in compensation from Glencore, claiming his shares in Mutanda Mining were fraudulently sold in two transactions to Glencore in 2007 and 2012. A Democratic Republic of the Congo court suspended a hearing over the lawsuit.