During his father's military rule, Mohammed Abacha was involved in looting the government. A preliminary report published by the Abdulsalam Abubakar transitional government in November 1998 described the process. Sani Abacha told his National Security Adviser Ismaila Gwarzo to provide fake funding requests, which Abacha approved. The funds were usually sent in cash or travellers' cheques by the Central Bank of Nigeria to Gwarzo Kuncnoni, who took them to Abacha's house. Mohammed Abacha then arranged to launder the money to offshore accounts. An estimated $1.4 billion in cash was delivered in this way.
Arrest and deal with government
In 1999, Abacha was arrested and charged with the murder of Kudirat Abiola (wife of MKO Abiola) and the attempted murder of Alex Ibru, head of The Guardian, an opposition newspaper. Sani Abacha's Chief Security Officer Hamza al-Mustapha was his co-defendant. In 2002, Abacha was ultimately acquitted and released by President Olusegun Obasanjo. This was after an agreement was reached between the government and the Abacha family that they would hand over the balance of funds embezzled during his father's rule. Musa Umar Kazaure of The Weekly Trust said that the move was politically motivated. The prison did not immediately release Mohammed Abacha after Obasanjo acquitted him.
On April 18, 2005, Justice Amina Adamu Augie of the Court of Appeal in Abuja said that Mohammed Abacha would undergo a trial at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory due to offenses related to the stealing of public funds. Mohammed Abacha filed an appeal to fight the judgment.
As of 2008, he is married with 5 children from Fatimah his first wife and 1 from his second wife.
- Pieth, Mark (2008). Recovering stolen assets. Peter Lang. pp. 43–44. ISBN 3-03911-583-9.
- Lewis, Peter (2007). Growing apart: oil, politics, and economic change in Indonesia and Nigeria. University of Michigan Press. p. 178. ISBN 0-472-06980-2.
- Human rights watch world report, 2000. Human Rights Watch. 1999. p. 58. ISBN 1-56432-238-6.
- Lemmy Ughegbe (July 26, 2002). "Government ties Mohammed Abacha's freedom to $402m deal". Vanguard (Nigeria). Retrieved 2011-06-24.
- Musa Umar Kazaure (2002-07-19). "Abacha’s release: Justice or politics?". The Weekly Trust. Archived from the original on May 20, 2006. Retrieved 2011-06-24.
- "Obasanjo visit sparks Kano riot". BBC. 29 July 2002. Retrieved 2011-06-24.
- "Nigeria: Court of Appeal says "no immunity" for Abacha's son." ThisDay.
- "The Perfect Mark," The New Yorker