Friday, January 21, 2022
HomeNewsAppeal Court Backs Forfeiture Order Of Diezani’s Jewellery Worth $40m

Appeal Court Backs Forfeiture Order Of Diezani’s Jewellery Worth $40m

The Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos has upheld the final forfeiture order on the $40 million worth of jewelry seized from the premises of the former Nigerian Minister for Petroleum, Diezani Allison-Madueke.

Justice Festus Obande, who read the verdict on Friday, found that there was no basis for Alison Madueke’s attempt to overturn the lower court order and then rejected the former minister’s request to contest the confiscation order.

Apart from an appeal by the former minister to the Supreme Court, the jewelry is confiscated by the federal government.

In July 2019, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) obtained an order from Judge Nicholas Oweibo from the Federal Supreme Court to temporarily cede the expensive items to the federal government.

According to the schedule attached to the forfeiture application, the jewelry, categorized into 33 sets, includes “419 expensive bangles; 315 expensive rings; 304 expensive earrings; 267 expensive necklaces; 189 expensive wristwatches; 174 expensive necklaces and earrings; 78 expensive bracelets; 77 expensive brooches; and 74 expensive pendants.”

In his application for the final forfeiture order, EFCC counsel Mr Rotimi Oyedepo had told the judge that the items were reasonably suspected to have been acquired with the proceeds of unlawful activities of the former minister.

An investigator with the Commission, Rufai Zaki, in an affidavit before the court insisted that the jewelleries were beyond the former minister’s “known and provable lawful income.”