of the trial

The main stages of the judicial investigations into the Nigerian oil licence Opl245 and the Milan trial, from 2014 to the present.

September 2013
Re:Common, Global Witness, The Corner House and Nigerian anti-corruption campaigner Dotun Oloko file a complaint with the Milan Public Prosecutor's Office requesting an investigation into ENI, its executives and former Nigerian officials, as well as Italian and Nigerian intermediaries on their role in the 2011 OPL 245 agreement.
June 2014
The Milan Public Prosecutor's Office notifies ENI of the opening of an investigation.
September 2014
The UK authorities respond to a request from the Milan prosecutor to freeze $85 million from the OPL 245 deal that was held by the UK courts as a result of the dispute between Malabu Oil & Gas and Nigerian broker Emeka Obi. At the same time, the Swiss authorities freeze approximately $112 million in the Basel bank accounts of intermediaries Emeka Obi, Gianluca Di Nardo and their companies..
May 2015
Re:Common, Global Witness and The Corner House submit an addendum to their 2013 complaint to the Milan Public Prosecutor's Office, calling for an investigation into Shell and its executives.
February 2016
Shell's headquarters in The Hague are searched by a joint investigation team of the Italian and Dutch financial police.
December 2016
The Milan Public Prosecutor's Office informs Shell, Eni and 11 other defendants and the victim - the Federal Republic of Nigeria - of the conclusion of its investigation, including the charges it alleges.
February 2017
The Milan Public Prosecutor's Office requests that the judge examining the investigation - the so-called 'judge for preliminary investigations' - opens a trial.
April 2017
The preliminary hearing on the case begins. In the course of the hearing, Obi and Di Nardo opt for fast track criminal proceedings.
June 2017
Four former Shell executives are informed of the findings of the Milan investigation into their involvement and the Milan Public Prosecutor's Office requests a trial. The preliminary judge accepts this further request.
December 2017
The judge for preliminary investigations rules that Eni, Shell and all other defendants, including former Shell executives, should be remanded for trial.
January 2018
The preliminary judge amends her December 2017 decision to correct an error in the text regarding the description of the charges against the four Shell managers. Shell will subsequently use this error to appeal the decision to remand the managers for trial (see below).
March 2018
The first hearing is held in Milan.
March 2018
The four former Shell executives appeal to the Court of Cassation to challenge the January 2018 amendment to the Preliminary Investigation Judge's decision of December 2017, requesting that the decision be set aside.
May 2018
The criminal trial begins in Milan. However, the hearing is suspended pending the outcome of the Court of Cassation's ruling on the request by the four former Shell executives to overturn the preliminary judge's decision in relation to their criminal case.
June 2018
The Court of Cassation dismisses the appeal of Shell's executives.
June 2018
The first hearing on the merits of the case takes place in Milan on 20 June.
January 2021
Start of the trial of Aliyu Abubakar in related proceedings.
March 2021
The Court of Appeal of Milan acquitted Emeka Obi and Gianluca Di Nardo, revoking the seizures against the two (EUR 112 million in total).
July 2021
The Milan Prosecutor and the Federal Republic of Nigeria both lodge appeals against the acquital judgment of the Court of First Instance.
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