The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seized 2,149 jewelry and a personalized gold iPhone from the former official’s Abuja residence during investigations into her alleged corrupt activities while in government.
The Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, ordered the final confiscation of the items from the government in a September 2019 decision, but the defendant challenged it and appealed.
The Court of Appeal has now rejected the former minister’s request, rejecting it as unfounded in a judgment delivered on Friday, November 26, 2021.
Diezani’s unsuccessful argument in the lower and appellate courts was that the jewelry collection had been legitimately acquired, with certain items given to him as well.
She said the EFCC’s seizure of her collection violated her constitutional right to own and appropriate property at its discretion.
The confiscated items include 419 bracelets, 315 rings, 304 earrings, 267 necklaces, 189 wristwatches and dozens of pendants, brooches and cufflinks.
Diezani held three ministerial posts between 2008 and 2015, and has been accused of numerous acts of corruption, with some of his alleged collaborators having already been convicted.
She has remained abroad since leaving the government and accused the authorities of persecuting her.
EFCC’s attempts to extradite him to Nigeria to answer for his alleged crimes have been condemned by critics as tame.