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The New Yorker investigates a ten-year multibillion oil swap involving Kazakhstan, Iran and a subsidiary of the Mobil Corporation. The story reveals that Mobil possibly violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by paying more than a billion of dollars to Russian companies in "unorthodox transactions." The report raises "questions about the company's decisions to enter deals that ultimately benefitted powerful figures in the region, including President Nursultan Nazarbayev, of Kazakhstan, and former Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, of Russia." The investigation exposes the involvement of James Giffin, an American and a trusted aide of the Kazakh president, and looks at the role that some western high-ranking officials played in the corrupted scheme.