July 25, 2014 / 6:56 PM / 3 years ago

French man gets 2 years in U.S. prison for role in Guinea mine scandal

July 25 (Reuters) - A former adviser to mining giant BSG Resources was sentenced in New York federal court on Friday to two years in prison for obstructing a criminal probe in connection with a bribery investigation in Guinea.

Frederic Cilins, a French national, pleaded guilty in March to one count of obstruction and admitted attempting to bribe Mamadie Toure, a widow of deceased former Guinea President Lansana Conte, so she would leave the United States to avoid questioning by federal authorities.

Cilins was charged as part of a U.S. probe into potentially illegal payments made to Guinean officials to secure rights to one of the world’s largest untapped iron ore deposits for BSG Resources (BSGR), the mining arm of Israeli billionaire Beny Steinmetz’s conglomerate.

BSGR has denied any wrongdoing.

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