Friday, 3 May 2013

Ibori loses appeal in UK

The jailed former Governor of Delta State, James Ibori, lost a legal
appeal on Thursday against a 13-year prison sentence for embezzling
£50m in one of Britain's biggest money-laundering cases.

Ibori, a founding member of the Peoples Democratic Party and a
behind-the-scenes kingmaker, who ran Delta State for eight years, was
trying to get his sentence reduced.

His lawyers argued that the original judge had indicated the term
would be shorter.

Judge Antony Edwards-Stuart rejected the argument at the appeal
hearing and said money laundering should attract close to the maximum
14-year sentence.

Ibori pleaded guilty to 10 charges of fraud and money-laundering in
February 2012. He is the most prominent Nigerian politician to be
successfully prosecuted for corruption, in one of the most
graft-ridden countries in the world, according to monitoring group
Transparency International.

The Ibori case was heard in London after prosecutors argued that,
although much of the activity in question took place in Nigeria, some
money did pass through Britain and British banks.

During his trial last year, a London court heard the stolen fortune
was used to buy six foreign properties and a fleet of cars, although
the judge said the total amount stolen may in fact be "in excess of

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