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UK, Nigeria sign MoU to return £4.2m Ibori loot

UK, Nigeria sign MoU to return £4.2m Ibori loot
March 09
12:15 2021

The United Kingdom has committed to returning £4.2 million loot recovered from James Ibori, former governor of Delta state, and his associates.

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Catriona Laing, British high commissioner to Nigeria, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to that effect with Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation, in Abuja on Tuesday.

Laing said the money which was recovered Ibori’s family and friends will be returned to Nigeria in the coming weeks.

She added that the UK is stepping up efforts to block moves to siphon public funds from Nigeria to the country.

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In 2012, a UK court sentenced Ibori – who governed Delta from 1999 to 2007 – to prison after convicting him of fraud and money laundering.

He had pleaded guilty to a 10-count charge of fraud involving sums amounting to about $66 million.

He was slammed a 13-year jail term but returned to Nigeria in February 2017 after serving part of his term.

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Ibori later filed an appeal against his conviction which was dismissed by a UK court, paving the way for confiscation of his assets in the UK.

In 2018, he claimed he was a victim of political persecution, adding that “quantum of lies were heaped against me”.

“Owing to this, I have since lost faith in the British judicial system, having been through it and observed first-hand the politics, desperation and wicked machinations inherent in the process that rigged the trial against me and against all judicial wholesome processes, which differentiate the modern era from the dark ages,” he had said via a statement.

“I will continue to protest the political nature of my predicament. In all of this, I will say that what I have been through since the persecution against me began has taught me incredible lessons.”

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