February 4, 2023

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Interpol seeks to arrest Angolan billionaire Isabel dos Santos |  crime news

Interpol seeks to arrest Angolan billionaire Isabel dos Santos | crime news

The global police agency has issued a Red Notice to the businesswoman who says she is a victim of “political persecution”.

Reuters news agency reports that the global police agency (Interpol) is asking law enforcement authorities around the world to locate and temporarily arrest Angolan billionaire Isabel dos Santos.

Interpol confirmed to the agency on Wednesday that it had issued a Red Notice for the wealthy man, “not an international arrest warrant” but “a request to law enforcement authorities around the world to locate and temporarily detain a person pending extradition, surrender or similar legal action”.

Angolan Prosecutor General Helder Pita Gross told reporters this week that Angola had served an international arrest warrant for dos Santos, AFP reported.

Meanwhile, dos Santos said she was a victim of “political persecution”.

The 49-year-old businesswoman, who is the daughter of the late Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos who ruled for 38 years until 2017, was once considered the richest woman in Africa.

Dos Santos has faced accusations of corruption for years, including allegations from Angola in 2020 that she and her husband funneled $1 billion in state funds to companies in which they owned stakes during her father’s presidency, including from oil giant Sonangol.

She has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

Portuguese news agency Lusa reported on November 18 that Interpol had issued an international arrest warrant for dos Santos. But Interpol told Reuters it issued a red notice instead at the request of the Angolan authorities.

According to Lusa, an official document related to the application to Interpol indicates that dos Santos is often in Portugal, Britain and the United Arab Emirates.

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The same document cited by Llosa said dos Santos is wanted for various crimes, including alleged embezzlement, fraud, influence peddling and money laundering.

In an interview with CNN Portugal On Tuesday, dos Santos said that courts in Angola are not “independent” and judges there are “accustomed to carrying out a political agenda.”

“There is no doubt that we live in a context of political persecution,” she said.