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Friday, February 23, 2024 | Back issues
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Fresno Firm Fired Blanks in|Terrorism Fight, Arms Dealer Claims

SACRAMENTO (CN) - A Nigerian arms dealer claims a California company defrauded it of $8.6 million it handed over for guns and ammo to fight Boko Haram terrorists.

Societe D'Equipments Internationaux Nigeria sued Dolarian Capital and Ara G. Dolarian on Oct. 9 in Federal Court. It claims it paid the defendants $8,618,646.57 for "assets and munitions for the Nigerian armed services" to fight Boko Haram.

Dolarian and his company are based in Fresno. Dolarian Web pages posted Tuesday morning listed a Fresno address and also "Kiev Ukraine" and "Sofia Bulgaria," without street addresses for the foreign cities.

Societe claims in the lawsuit that Ara Dolarian described himself as an "arms broker and supplier" and "represented that he and his company, defendant Dolarian Capital, had the experience and the expertise to navigate the regulatory requirements and approvals required by governmental authorities to acquire, sell, supply, and deliver the military assets and munitions to SEI in Nigeria."

So in June and September 2014, Societe says, it paid Dolarian $8,618,646.57, but Dolarian never delivered a single bullet.

Societe says it canceled the contract in May and demanded its money back, but Dolarian said Societe owed it a $27 million "cancellation fee" for "supposed other contracts," which contracts Societe says never existed.

Societe seeks rescission of contract, restitution of $8,618,646.57, and punitive damages for fraud, conversion, breach of contract, and money had and received.

Societe is represented by Christopher Dominguez, with Klein, DeNatale, Goldner, Cooper, Rosenlieb & Kimball, of Bakersfield, who did not return a call seeking comment.

Dolarian Capital did not respond to an email request for comment.

Boko Haram is a terrorist organization aligned with the Islamic State of Iraq and has carried out several terrorist attacks, primarily in Nigeria, including the 2014 kidnapping of 276 girls in Chibok, Borno, 50 of whom escaped, while the rest remain missing.

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