By on July 17, 2013

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While Equitorial Guinea is one of the wealthiest countries in Africa,  only half of the people have access to clean, safe drinking water. One fifth of children born in the country die before they are five years old. Two years ago the French government raided the €80 million, 101-room mansion near the Champs Elysees belonging to Teodorin Obiang, the son of the president of Equatorial Guinea, Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, in power since 1979. Among the treasures found in the mansion were a cache of supercars, which have now been sold off.

The raid was part of a “bien mals aquis” investigation into ill-gotten gains. According to French authorities, those ill-gotten gains were funds belonging to the African country looted by the Obiang family. Though Obiang is claiming diplomatic immunity due to having been named Second Vice President of Equatorial Guinea, a recent ruling in French courts said that such immunity did not protect property bought with stolen public money. As a result of that ruling, French authorities have gone through with the seizure of vintage wines, antique furniture, fine art including a Degas and a Renoir, and jewelry from the mansion as well as Teodorin Obiang’s impressive collection of low mileage high dollar cars. Those cars have now been sold off by the Drouot auction house in Paris, fetching over $4 million (€3.1 million, £2.7 million), and included two Bugattis, two Bentleys, a Rolls-Royce, a Ferrari, a Porsche, a Maserati and a Maybach.

Court documents show that 4 years ago, Obiang imported 26 high end luxury cars worth $12 million to France from the United States. The fleet was comprised of one each from Aston Martin, Porsche, Lamborghini and Maserati, plus two Bugattis, four Mercedes-Benzes, four Rolls-Royces, five Bentleys, and seven Ferraris. Despite the fact that the roads in Equatorial Guinea are generally not paved and require serious 4X4 vehicles, many of those cars were shipped to Africa for his use there. The cars that were auctioned were the ones left in his Paris pied a terre.

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16 Comments on “French Authorities Sell Off Ultra Luxury Cars Seized From Son of Dictator...”


  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    The reason they impounded them was that there were no French-made vehicles in the list (Does the Bugatti count as French made?)

    Now seriously…A distinct trait of third world countries is a fabulously wealthy elite ruling an impoverished and famine-prone populace.

  • avatar
    Landcrusher

    The sad thing is that EG is likely the best run place in its area. The bar would be pretty low for one of the Obiangs to pivot into one of the regions greatest rulers of all times.

  • avatar

    Apropos of not very much, I want that Aston V600 baaaad. Even in red.

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    I am so glad that the strict export controls that the USA has in place prevented the kleptocrat who bought them from exporting them.

    To paraphrase Foxworthy “you know you’re a banana republic when despots use your banks to launder their blood money.”

  • avatar
    -Nate

    This is really good news .

    -Nate

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    That Rolls looks so gauche in white.

  • avatar
    Geekcarlover

    Pictures soon to appear in online ads tagged “$50 cars available at government auctions.”

  • avatar
    kmoney

    Loading that MC12 onto the truck looked like it probably took half the life out of the clutch…

  • avatar
    Vance Torino

    Damn Commies: always stealing the Job Creator’s cars

  • avatar
    hoonthatprado

    Fun fact is that I met the cousins of Obiang while they were exchange students in Michigan, some 10 years ago. All of these guys were well-motorized as well, although way more frugal than T., which I never met. Nobody was talking about EG or the Obiangs at that time yet. So these cousins used to tell me how everybody in their country would travel by helicopter, Ferrari and M3s… it sounded surreal, since I have travelled to other places in Africa, and I have rarely seen anything other than Corollas or Land Cruisers on that continent. These cousins always talked the now infamous Teodore in great regards, it was obvious that he was and is the “Jr King” in his country.

  • avatar
    carinator

    I know when I think of Africa’s hero, I think of France. #eyerolls

    • 0 avatar
      Domestic Hearse

      The Dutch and English did their fair share as well. In the post-colonial age, with the power vacuum left by the Europeans, despots have proven to be even worse. If the French can begin to redeem themselves by righting a long list of wrongs and abuses, I’m all for it. Long way to go, as your eye roll implies.

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    I hope the French authorities took the proceeds from the sale of the cars — and the luxury loot of jewelry, paintings, furniture, etc — and found a way to funnel it back to the children dying of disease and malnutrition, and half the population with no access to clean water. Funded medicine, infrastructure, food.

    Call it wealth re-redistribution. In this particular case, I’m not opposed. Not even a little.

  • avatar
    billfrombuckhead

    I wished we could do this to our kleptocracy class, the Wall Street banksters.


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