Date of Award

Summer 8-31-2018

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Computer Science

First Advisor

Margaret McCoey


The Capstone Project will focus on money laundering in Nigeria by Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) and the devastating negative impact on Nigeria’s progress as well as various measures that could combat it.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) defines money laundering as the processing of “ Criminal proceeds to disguise their illegal origin.” And PEPs as “someone who has been entrusted with a public function.” (FATF, 2018). The Nigerian government has adopted the term, “politically exposed persons” to include senior politicians and senior government officials as well as their immediate family.

According to Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, $150 billion was stolen from the government in only 10 years (between 2005 and 2015). (Buhari, 2015). President Buhari stated that until 2015, PEPs were conducting official government business with personal and private corporate accounts. $150 billion is about one third of the Nigerian economy. According to the World Bank, Nigeria’s Gross Domestics product (GDP) in 2016 was $404, 653 billion. (World Bank, 2016).

Money laundering by PEPs on the Nigerian State has resulted in 70% of its citizens living in poverty and misery, despite the fact that Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy that is rich in natural resources and is the sixth largest exporter of crude oil earning over $300 billion dollars in the last thirty years of the 20th century. (World Bank, 2010, 2016).

This project will examine various methods, through which PEPs launder money as well

as explore the consequences money laundering has exacted on the State. Additionally, this paper will highlight anti-money laundering (AML) efforts by both the government and the international community and their impact in combating money laundering.

Finally, I will explore various recommendations that can assist in combating money laundering in Nigeria. And how countries and international organizations that provide financial support and aid to Nigeria can use that leverage in assisting to combat money laundering in Nigeria.