Fox News: Oil-for-food kleptocrat Benon Sevan indicted in Manhattan

In federal district court, on the very day that Bush is set to meet with the new U.N. Sec-Gen for the first time. Sweet.

If you don’t know who Sevan is, Wikipedia has its usual concise summary. See-Dubya was even pithier in a post at Patterico’s site earlier this year:

Benon Sevan was the man as close to the center of the Oil-for-Food Scandal as it is possible to be–and who is accused of taking bribes to look the other way and let Saddam exploit the system. He has retreated to Cyprus and lurks in an apartment he inherited from his aunt–an aunt who, he says, gave him the $140,000 that is accused to be a bribe from Saddam. An aunt who fell down the elevator shaft of this building and died when the story came to light.

Claudia Rosett, who did more to break the oil-for-food story than any other reporter, knocked on Sevan’s door in Cyprus earlier this year — and much to her surprise, was invited in for Turkish coffee.

Cyprus has no extradition treaty with the U.S. so the indictment’s mostly for show, to nudge the U.N. along towards reform. Don’t hold your breath, writes Eric Shawn, who reported the Sevan story this morning for Fox:

Ban Ki-moon bears little resemblance to the legendary Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley — but appearances can be deceiving. The new United Nations secretary-general has been in office barely three weeks and has already shown himself a worthy successor to the time honored political tradition of patronage, favors and ducking.

The horse-trading on the 38th floor of the Secretariat is evident in Ban’s new appointments, all heralded and praised by the U.N. chorus; upon closer examination they recall the best traits of a Chicago ward heeler, Tammany Boss, or political machine. Everybody got a piece of the action.

Update: The Sevan story is up at