PARIS (AP) — France’s high court docket on Wednesday upheld the conviction of Equatorial Guinea’s vice president for money laundering and embezzling hundreds of thousands of greenbacks in public money.
The in miserable health-gotten gains are now to be returned to the central African country’s inhabitants below a brand novel French appropriate process that seeks to be certain that the cash doesn’t again plunge into execrable fingers.
Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, the son of Equatorial Guinea’s prolonged-serving president, used to be originally convicted in 2017 by a Paris court docket. The court docket handed him a 3-year suspended sentence, fined him 30 million euros and ordered property in France value tens of hundreds of thousands of euros seized.
An appeals court docket upheld the conviction in 2020, and France’s Court of Cassation threw out Obiang’s final appeal this week, according to the anti-corruption groups that filed the original appropriate complaint against him 14 years ago.
Obiang claimed he has immunity from prosecution and didn’t seem for the French court docket proceedings. His lawyers challenged the jurisdiction of French courts in the case.
“With this resolution, French justice confirms that France is never any longer any longer a land of welcome for money embezzled by foreign leaders and their entourage,” acknowledged Patrick Lefas, head of Transparency International France, an anti-corruption watchdog.
Obiang used to be accused of spending tens of hundreds of thousands of greenbacks in France with funds stemming from corruption, embezzlement and extortion in his country. He has led a lavish everyday life involving luxury and sports automobiles, designer garments, artworks of large value and high-finish real property.
No subject its oil and gasoline riches, Equatorial Guinea has a dramatic gap between its privileged ruling class and plenty of the inhabitants, which prospers mainly on subsistence farming. The worn Spanish colony is speed by Africa’s longest-serving president, Obiang’s father Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo.