Kidnappers Demand e-gold For Safe Return of Nigerian Soccer Player’s Brother

Now, this is new: Kidnappers demand e-gold payment as ransom:


nigerian-terror Joseph Yobo is a vice-captain of the Nigeria national football team. He currently plays with the English Premier League club Everton and he is one of their top players.

Norum Yobo is Joe’s younger brother and Norum was just kidnapped by criminals in Port Harcourt, Rivers State about 10 days ago. The younger brother is being held for ransom and the psychotic kidnappers say they will plunge a knife through his heart, unless money[e-gold] is paid for his safe return. Yes, that is correct, they are demanding "ransom gold".

It seems like an ugly new twist on a very old crime, the kidnappers are accepting the ransom paid in e-gold digital currency!

Their statement as reported by the local press, "We demand $10,000, which must be paid to our e-gold account. We will like to call his family as soon as the number is given to us," the group said in a statement. (10k is about one million one hundred and ninety thousand naira).

The Guardian reports that the Matiaph Group (gang) has taken responsibility for the kidnapping.

Abductions are rather common in the oil-rich Niger Delta region of this country, but for the kidnappers to demand e-gold seems like something new. I trust that if the kidnapping progresses to a payment stage, the e-gold techs will be tracking the $10,000 digital payment through their AT&T servers in ‘real time’ on one of those comfortable workstations in their Melbourne, FL offices.

I would not want to be the local agent in Nigeria who receives that gold for outexchange….ouch…that sting…that is the very long arm of the law. Kidnappers and e-gold, don’t mix.

Too bad for e-gold, because all the positive press in the world can’t spin the company out of that one.

I can hear the kidnapper’s statement, "we selected e-gold ransom payments because of no start up costs, all transactions are final (unlike credit cards) and the transfer fees we pay on our ransom monies are very low". Even Baghdad Bob can’t spin this story. Kidnapper with guns, using e-gold. (I have the new design for this year’s Christmas cards)

There is another aspect of the kidnappers decision to accept e-gold. This one is outlined in the recent .pdf from the U.S. Department of Justice, National Drug Intelligence Center report entitled Money Laundering in Digital Currencies.
Additionally, because the value of digital currency accounts changes with the market performance of the backing commodity, any profits earned (capital gains) during the withdrawal of digital currency accounts may not get reported to the IRS unless the digital currency account holder decides to declare the amount voluntarily.
Consequently, if the kidnappers receive the e-gold ransom payment in the morning and the value of spot gold goes up before they can sell it, technically the kidnappers would be liable to pay some additional fees and tax on the profits earned from the move in the price of gold known as the "capital gain" on their ransom transaction.

Of course that tax is only required if the kidnappers are US citizens and working in Nigeria and then they would be voluntarily reporting that extra income (fingers crossed on that one)

We’ll get back to you on those regulations, but perhaps it’s time for a bit more verification on those e-gold accounts? What do you say Doug? Food for thought?

Usually, the local militia kidnappers target oil-workers as we have so often watched on CNN. The images show a small group of white guys chained together looking very nervous, surrounded by some pretty mean looking ‘tough guys’ sporting Soviet made post cold war surplus automatic weapons and really cheap sunglasses.

Besides the trauma to Yobo’s family, this kidnapping, has sent some big shockwaves through the Nigerian sporting community.

A very popular Nigerian blogger friend and digital money enthusiast, Oluniyi David Ajao, had this to say about e-gold and the recent troubles,
"Whether is privacy or anonymity, it is a problem for e-gold and e-gold has been attempting to reverse this ugly trend for several months now with little success. Criminals still rely on e-gold and some online businesses like EasyDNS have stopped using e-gold entirely. Its brush with the United States Department of Justice, it’s IP-blocking spree, account locking, DDos attacks, and the death of its primary exchanger OMNIPAY have all been a combination of factors that have made e-gold very unattractive in recent times. Exchangers now charge between 25% and 50% for converting e-gold to national currencies!"

We pray for the safe return of the Yobo’s family member along with the arrest and prosecution of these kidnappers or criminal gang which have chosen to misuse the e-gold system.


3 responses

  1. Raselebeli Khotseng

    Omoseye Bolaji, a well known black writer based in South Africa will be conferred with a prestigious traditional Chieftaincy title by the Olubadan (King) of Ibadan city in Nigeria (West Africa) next month.
    Omoseye has over the years managed to build up a very impressive literary body of work, and is being honoured mainly for his contributions to black African writing. Ibadan for decades was the most populous black city south of the Sahara, boasting the first Television Station in Africa, the Cocoa House skyscraper, the Liberty stadium etc.
    Omoseye Bolaji has contributed in awesome fashion to African black writing, publishing well over 20 books, with his literary works discussed, evaluated in many articles, books and on the Internet. Some of his works include The Termagant, Impossible Love, The ghostly adversary, The guillotine, People of the Townships, Poems from Mauritius, and the Subtle transgressor
    South African writer, Flaxman Qoopane, a close friend of Omoseye was elated to hear about the chieftaincy. “It’s rare indeed for a writer to be given a traditional chieftaincy title just on the strength of his writings. I am so happy for Omoseye. He could have had an easy, comfortable life but he largely sacrificed everything all for his love of literacy and literature”

    Omoseye Bolaji, who lives in the Free State, has garnered a string of awards over the years, thanks to his writing prowess. Last year alone (2007) he was given a Lifetime Achievement award by the Free State government; and the University of the Free State conferred the Chancellor’s Medal on him. His father the late Chief SL Bolaji was a proud Ibadanman who was also an acclaimed writer. Omoseye will be conferred with the “Onigegewura” (Golden Pen) of Ibadan on August 18, 2008

    Raselebeli Khotseng (PRO, Phoenix Literary Club, South Africa)

  2. @Raselebi,

    thanks for the info.

  3. Finally the beginning of English Premier League. Will be exciting and unpredictably. With SkySportsHD1 we can watch recaps and highlights from all games.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: