The vice president of Equatorial Guinea Teodorin Obiang Nguema has a tracked record of money laundering and corruption and he is said to face trial in France. Teodorin, is the son of Africa’s longest-serving president alive, who has been in power for 37 years. He has been accused of looting state funds and spending lavishly abroad. Acquiring luxury cars and other assets in Europe emanate questions on his propensity to spend.
Last November, 11 of Obiang’s luxury cars, including a $2.8 million Koenigegg One, and a $2 million Bugatti Veyron, were seized in Switzerland while Dutch authorities seized Ebony Shine, a $120 million 76-meter (250 ft) luxury yacht, said to belong to Obiang, Quartz stated.
The US has also cracked down Teodorin Obiang Nguema’s assets. As part of a settlement, Obiang forfeited more than $30 million worth of assets, including a Malibu mansion and other luxury cars, “purchased with corruption proceeds.”
For his part, Obiang is expected to plead not guilty as his lawyer says he “earned the money legally in his country.” His attorneys have also tried to delay the trial claiming they have not had enough time to prepare.
Should the trial go ahead as scheduled, Teodorin Obiang Nguema is not expected to attend or serve a sentence if convicted. However, a conviction of the vice-president will reinforce the notion in Equatorial Guinea that the country’s ruling family are plundering state resources for personal gain.