The Federal Government has commenced the process of extraditing a former governor of Delta State, Mr. James Ibori, from the United Kingdom. Recall the Southwark Crown Court had, on April 17, 2012, sentenced Ibori to 13 years in prison after the ex-governor pleaded guilty to 10 counts of money laundering and stealing $250m from the Delta State treasury. Ibori, a Peoples Democratic Party chieftain, was the governor of the state between 1999 and 2007.
Meanwhile the UK Home Secretary, Amber Rudd told BBC that the government did not intend to deport Ibori to Nigeria until he handed over £18million of the “proceeds of crime” he alleged the ex-governor held. The convicted former governor, was, however, allowed to go home on the condition that he would not travel out of the UK. He is currently residing at his residence on Abbey Road, London, where he is under strict surveillance from where he will report to the UK Police weekly.
According to the BBC, the presiding judge, Mrs. Justice May, said, “The Secretary of State appears to have taken it upon herself that Mr. Ibori does remain in this country, in apparent contradiction of the order served earlier this year to deport him. The position of the Secretary of State, as very candidly set out by Mr. Birdling (representing the home secretary), is that she accepts that there is an argument that she has no power to detain him. I have decided that the balance of convenience falls heavily in favour of his immediate release. I am not prepared to impose conditions involving tagging or curfews. You don’t hold someone just because it is convenient to do so and without plans to deport them.”