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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

JAMES IBORI REGAINS FREEDOM

Delta State’s former Governor, James Ibori, has been released from prison in the United Kingdom after serving out his jail term.

According to reports, Ibori was released a few minutes past noon following a court order.


Ibori was sentenced by a United Kingdom court to prison for 13 years and served out his term (6 and half years) midnight on Tuesday.

Reports say the former governor will not be able to leave the U.K for the time being, and will be required to visit the police once a week.

Ibori was born on August 4 1959, and was the Governor of Delta State from 29 May 1999 to 29 May 2007 ruling under the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

Ibori’s corruption charges started with filing of petitions by his kinsmen to the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).

In 2007, the Metropolitan Police raided the London offices of lawyer Bhadresh Gohil.

Ibori, who as governor of oil-producing Delta State from 1999 to 2007 became one of Nigeria’s richest and most powerful men, served the term after pleading guilty in 2012 to 10 counts of fraud and money-laundering.

While in office, Ibori acquired luxury properties in Britain, the United States, South Africa and Nigeria. He is the most senior Nigerian politician to have been held to account for the corruption that has blighted Africa’s most populous nation.

As a result of these corruption allegations, the United Kingdom courts froze Ibori’s assets there, valued at about £17 million ($35 million), in early August 2007.

His wife, Nkoyo, was arrested at Heathrow Airport in London on 1 November 2007, in connection with the probe of the assets of her husband, particularly in the United Kingdom.

On December 17, 2009, A Federal High Court sitting in Asaba, Delta State, discharged and acquitted Ibori of all 170 charges of corruption brought against him by EFCC.

On May 13 2010, Ibori was arrested in Dubai, United Arab Emirates under Interpol arrest warrants, issued from United Kingdom courts and enacted by the Metropolitan Police.

The Nigerian government and the United Kingdom then agreed to work together on Ibori’s extradition to the United Kingdom.

He was finally extradited to UK where he was tried and jailed.

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