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Equatorial Guinea dictator's son accused of 'splurging millions of impoverished nation's money'

October 27, 2011 - Washington

The US Justice Department has accused an African dictator's son of spending 100 million dollars of his impoverished country's money on luxuries.

According to The Telegraph, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, the son of Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the president of Equatorial Guinea spent money on a private jet, a Malibu mansion, and a trove of Michael Jackson memorabilia.

Mangue is alleged to have lived a Playboy lifestyle in California where he owned a collection of 24 sports cars valued at 10 million dollars.

A 46-page civil complaint filed by the US government in a court in California said Teodoro Obiang, who serves as a Minister of Forestry and Agriculture in his father's government earned 6,799 dollars a month.

He engaged in "extortion, misappropriation, embezzlement, or theft of public funds" to fund his lavish life, the complaint said.

In Mangue's most lavish expense, he commissioned a German company in 2008 to design a "mega yacht" worth 380 million dollars, nearly three times what Equatorial Guinea spends on health and education in a year.

His extraordinary catalogue of spending included a 3.2 million dollars spree on Jackson items. He paid 275,000 dollars for one of the late singer's white crystal-covered gloves and 80,000 dollars on a pair of his crystal-covered socks.

He also spent 245,000 dollars on a basketball signed by Jackson and basketball player Michael Jordan, the report said.

According to the paper, the US is seeking to recover 71 million dollars in assets from Obiang for "the benefit of the people of the country from which it was taken".


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