Vice-President Teodoro Nguema Obiang of Equatorial Guinea’s superyacht and two extravagant houses have been seized by South African authorities.
Following the success of a lawsuit against Obiang for wrongful detention and torture, local businessman Daniel Janse van Rensburg gained the court’s order for the seizures.
He has asked for a payout of roughly $2.2 million (£1.8 million).
He claims that after a business deal went south, he was wrongfully imprisoned in Equatorial Guinea for nearly 500 days.
The son of the world’s longest-serving leader and vice president has not yet offered any commentary on the situation.
It has long been alleged that he and President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo viewed the oil-rich nation of Equatorial Guinea as their private domain and abused its wealth and resources.
This judgment is the most recent in a line of judgments handed out against him by courts all around the world.
The superyacht was attached last Tuesday, and two residences in Cape Town were attached in a formal application two weeks ago, according to the businessman’s attorney, Errol Eldson, who was speaking to AFP.
He stated that a request had been made to put the assets up for auction.
Following his “harrowing incarceration” at the infamous Black Beach prison, Mr. Van Rensburg wrote a book last year about how a business trip to Equatorial Guinea in 2013 “turned into a journey to the depths of hell.” Mr. Van Rensburg has fought a protracted legal battle against the vice president in South African courts.
According to Mr. Eldson, who spoke to AFP, his client had established an airline in Equatorial Guinea with a local politician who pulled out at the last minute and sought a cash back.
Following the argument, the politician called Vice-President Obiang, and “within 10 minutes,” according to the lawyer, an elite security force team “picked Daniel up and tossed him into Black Beach prison.”
It is commonly believed that Obiang is being prepared to succeed his father, who has held the position of power for 43 years.
He ordered the arrest of his half-brother last month due to the selling of a plane.
It was claimed that his half-brother stole the sale’s revenues. He has not responded to the accusations in the media.
The vice president, who is renowned for leading a luxurious lifestyle, has also been afoul of the law on occasion.
According to US officials, a $30 million Malibu property and other assets, including a Ferrari automobile, were purchased with the profits of corruption in 2014.
Swiss officials confiscated 11 of his high-end vehicles two years later. The automobiles, which included a Bugatti, Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Bentleys, and Rolls Royces, were auctioned off for around $27 million.
In 2021, he was also fined and given a suspended sentence by a French court for squandering tax dollars to support a lavish lifestyle there. He refuted any misconduct.
The UK levied “anti-corruption” sanctions on him that same year.
He allegedly owned a collection of Michael Jackson memorabilia, which included a $275,000 glove studded in crystals that the late singer wore during his 1980s Bad tour.
The new sanctions, according to the UK, are directed at anyone who “stuffed their own pockets at the expense of their compatriots.”