The National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF) in France announced, Friday, September 9, the seizure of a mansion attributed to Denis Christel Sassou-Nguesso, eldest son of the President of the Republic of Congo, Dénis Sassou-Nguesso, and Minister of international cooperation, as part of an investigation into suspicions of “ill-gotten gains” on French territory.
Located in Neuilly-sur-Seine, this “mansion acquired by Mr. Denis Christel Sassou-Nguesso was seized in this file in June”, according to the details of the French judicial institution in charge of the fight against the great economic and financial crime.
However, still according to the PNF, this Congolese minister “is not indicted to date”. His lawyer, Jean-Jacques Neuer, said he was “scandalized that France, with its past as a great slave and colonial power, comes today to seek responsibilities from African leaders”.
It is since 2007 that the Survie and Sherpa associations had lodged a complaint with the Tribunal de grande instance of Paris against certain African heads of state and their families for “concealment of misappropriation of public property and complicity”. The presidents concerned are the Congolese Denis Sassou Nguesso, the late Gabonese Omar Bongo, the Equatorial Guinean Teodoro Obiang Nguema, the Burkinabe Blaise Compaoré and the late Angolan José Eduardo Dos Santos.
Former number two of the National Petroleum Company of Congo (SNPC), Denis Christel Sassou-Nguesso, nicknamed “Kiki the oilman”, is quoted many times in the investigation relating to “ill-gotten gains”.
In June 2021, France had created a system for the transparent restitution of ill-gotten gains to the populations of the countries of origin of the funds, which system had been demanded for fifteen years by NGOs including Transparency International France.