Former Wimbledon FC player and Enlgand star was detained at his residence in Sun City Estate, in Abuja on July 17 after being accused of selling land that wasn’t on the market, the Mirror reported.
Police arrested the 54-year-old on suspicion of ‘criminal conspiracy’ and he was then taken to the jail where he stayed for two days before being released on bail.
Police Deputy Inspector General Hyacinth Dagala said: ‘John Fashanu was arrested on July 17 in connection with an allegation of criminal conspiracy and obtaining the sum of N9,550,000 (£23,000) under false pretence.
‘He was granted administrative bail on July 18 but because of his inability to produce the requisite surety on that day, he remained in detention until July 19 when he was released.’
But an anonymous friend of Fashanu played down the arrest when he spoke to the Mirror and claimed it was a misunderstanding between friends.
He added: ‘This is a business deal between friends that has gone south and the police were asked to basically mediate.
‘It will all be sorted very quickly. It was a just a business deal.’
Fashanu is said to have agreed to repay the £23,000 before he left jail and was also ordered to hand in his British passport. Fashanu, who also presented TV shows, denied he committed a crime.
Sources said he looked to sell some of his cars to raise the cash as he waited for funds from his numerous business interests to clear in his bank account.
The London-born celebrity’s Nigerian barrister Hyp Egbune confirmed he had this week paid a second instalment of the money owed.
MORE ABOUT HIM
Born to a Guyanan mother and Nigerian father, Fashanu became a Barnado’s boy when they split. He was then fostered in Norfolk.
Once fronted Nigeria’s version of Deal or No Deal, Fashanu is a respected businessman and philanthropist, who now has the grand title of Ambassador in his adopted nation. He is said to be worth upwards of £6million, he spends his days in Nigeria cutting business deals, hanging out with politicians and fighting to stop people trafficking.
He and third wife, TV personality Rachel Bakam, are regulars on the social scene at glitzy parties.
Last year, the couple were given chieftaincy titles. Fashanu became Ofia-Afulu-Agu of Okwe Kingdom (meaning The Forest that Contains the Lion) and his wife Ugo-Di-Namba of Okwe Kingdom (Beautiful Eagle Queen from Another Kingdom).
Fash has been a UN ambassador for Nigeria, a Unicef goodwill ambassador for 53 African countries and a former board member of the Nigeria Football Association.
During his playing days, in 1997, he was acquitted in a high-profile match-fixing trial along with goalkeepers Bruce Grobbelaar and Hans Segers. In 2015 he was arrested over an unlicensed gun found in his Nigerian house during a police raid. He ended up paying a fine.
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