A daughter to the President of the Republic of the Congo Denis Sassou Nguesso has been charged with “money laundering and misuse of public funds,” as part of a larger investigation into the assets of three African presidential families.
According to the report, Julienne Sassou Nguesso, 50, and her 53-year-old husband Guy Johnson are under investigation by French authorities over the purchase of a mansion valued at $3.4 million in the wealthy Paris suburb of Neuilly-sur-Seine, just north of the ritzy 16th arrondissement.
The house is reported to have undergone renovations between 2007 and 2011 at a tune of 5.34 million euros, raising the couple’s total investment to nearly 10 million euros.
Investigators believe the couple may have financed part of the project through an offshore company in the Seychelles and with the sale of shares Julienne Sassou Nguesso owned in a telecommunications company tied to “corruption operations”, France24 reports a source to say.
French investigators have been looking into the entire Sassou Nguesso clan as well as relatives of Omar Bongo and his son, the current ruler, and President Teodoro Obiang Nguema of Equatorial Guinea.
Obiang’s son, Teodorin, is currently entangled in a court case in a Paris for having allegedly pillaged the country’s assets to fund a lavish personal lifestyle.
He has however denied the charges, saying the money came from legitimate sources.
By Jerry Owilli