James Ibori reacts to UK’s plan to seize $129m linked to him
Former governor of Delta State James Ibori has said his hopes are rapidly fading in getting justice as a London court gets set to confiscate more than £100 million ($129 million) belonging to him.
Recall a state prosecutor on Thursday asked a London court to order the confiscation.
Ibori served jail term in prison in the UK after being charged with laundering a “corruptly acquired fortune”.
He pleaded guilty in 2012 to 10 counts of fraud and money laundering and received a 13-year jail sentence.
Having served half of his prison sentence in pre and post-trial detention, as is common, Ibori returned to Nigeria in 2017 and did not attend Thursday’s hearing.
Lead prosecution counsel Jonathan Kinnear told the court that the total amount that should be confiscated from Ibori was £101.5 million and that if he did not pay up he should be sentenced to between five and 10 years in prison.
Judge David Tomlinson of Southwark Crown Court is expected to give his order on Friday or soon after hearing arguments from both sides.
Taking to his Facebook page to react, Ibori said his hope was “rapidly fading” for a fair hearing.
He also announced plans to seek redress and fight for justice in the highest courts in UK.
He said, “Finally, the shenanigans in the Southwark Crown Court are drawing to a close. Judge Tomlinson is due to make a confiscation order which should be both realisable and not punitive.
“However, after what transpired in court today my hopes are rapidly fading for any degree of fairness.