NEW YORK/LONDON - FBI agents have arrested a man who worked as a representative of Israeli billionaire Beny Steinmetz' operations in Guinea, as part of a US probe into alleged corruption in the mineral-rich West African country.
BSG Resources, the mining arm of Steinmetz' conglomerate, is currently battling the African nation over the right to mine one of the world's largest untapped iron-ore deposits, known as Simandou. It has repeatedly denied Guinean government allegations that it paid bribes to the country's former ruler to obtain the huge concession.
Frederic Cilins, 50, a French national named by the government of Guinea as "an agent" for BSG Resources, was arrested in Florida on Sunday by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He was charged with obstructing a criminal investigation, tampering with a witness and destruction of records, the US Department of Justice said on Monday.