Nigeria ex-governor sentenced to 13 years in prison for fraud

[JURIST] James Ibori, the former governor of Delta State [official website] in Nigeria, was convicted in a UK court on Tuesday on 10 counts of money laundering and conspiracy to commit fraud and sentenced to 13 years in prison. Ibori, who governed the oil-rich Delta State from 1999-2007, was convicted by the Southwark Crown Court [official website] for fraud charges totaling nearly $250 million. Among Ibori's most extravagant uses of public funds for his own private enjoyment were a fleet of armored Range Rovers for approximately $900,000, a private jet for $19 million and a $5 million mansion in Johannesburg, South Africa [Court News UK report]. The prosecuting lawyer declared that Ibori "deliberately and systematically" defrauded the people he was elected to represent [BBC report]. British central fraud authorities plan to confiscate Ibori's assets.

In February, Ibori pleaded guilty [JURIST report] to all 10 counts of fraud and money laundering in a UK court. In October 2010, the Dubai Court of First Instance [official website] ruled [JURIST report] that Ibori could be extradited to the UK to face charges of money laundering, fraud and embezzlement. Ibori was arrested in the United Arab Emirates by INTERPOL [official website] in May 2010. Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) [official website] accused Ibori of stealing Delta state funds worth $292 million during his time in office. These funds were allegedly filtered through banks in the UK, which led the UK Metropolitan Police [official website] to issue a warrant for his arrest. Ibori appealed the decision to Dubai's Civil Court of Appeal.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.