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NYC Case Casts Light On West African Mining Fight

Prosecutors say the widow had proof: contracts â¿¿ in French and titled "Portocole D'Accord" and "Lettre D'Engagement" â¿¿ between her and BSGR that promised her $2 million in advance and $5 million more if the mining rights were granted. After agreeing to cooperate in the probe, Toure purposely tried to spook Cilins by telling him the FBI was closing in and wanted her to turn over the contracts to the grand jury.

"We need to urgently, urgently, urgently destroy all of this," he allegedly responded in one of many conversations monitored by the FBI.

Cilins assured Toure that he had the blessing and funding from someone prosecutors label a co-conspirator but only identify as a "high-ranking individual" at BSGR.

"What I was asked to do is to watch when the documents are destroyed ... to be 100 percent sure that everything is destroyed and that nothing is dispersed," Cilins said in a whisper, according to prosecutors.

Cilins offered to give Toure $1 million once he witnessed the burning of the contracts, the papers say. But he also insisted she sign a sworn statement saying she never received money from BSGR and never intervened on its behalf in the Guinea mining deal.

FBI agents arrested Cilins at a Jacksonville airport after he and Toures met one last time. Agents discovered he was carrying more than $20,000 in cash.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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