Ex-international Sam Sodje has vehemently denied reports suggesting his brothers including former Super Eagles defender Efe were jailed by a United Kingdom court ‘for taking charity money’.
Reports emerged on Monday that Efe Sodje, 46, and Stephen Sodje, 43, and ex-rugby player Bright Sodje, 52, were found guilty and jailed for the fraud in 2017. According to several sources, the case can only be reported now following the conclusion of a separate trial involving Sam Sodje.
In exclusive interview with our correspondent from his base in London, Sam Sodje said the judgement of the lower court was expressly upturned by an appellate court upon appeal by the defendants.
He said it was surprising that a case that had already been dispensed with two years ago was brought to limelight shortly after he was cleared of match fixing and money laundering.
He said the ploy was to bring the Sodje Family down because it had now become a strong black family in the United Kingdom.
He said the case was dismissed by an appellate court and all the brothers were cleared, insisting none of them ever went to jail.
“I want people to think about it, I won my case last week Monday and they’re coming up with this now; Efe and my other brothers are at home, nobody is in jail, those people are bunch of bad losers. We were already vindicated but they have refused to accept defeat, displaying their wicked determination to bring a family of hardworking people down,” he told New Telegraph.
“Their grouse is that I was cleared and the guy that tried to frame me up was sentence to 18-month imprisonment; they just wanted to get back at us and they are now staging a media war.
“Their case lacked merit; three persons were sureties and signatories to the Foundation’s account, two (Ashley Carson and Clive Betts) were whites while my brother Bright was the third one. The three of them pulled out at the same time because they wanted us to accelerate the progress of the Foundation, how come the two whitemen were left alone and my brother who was the third signatory was brought into the case when the suit had been filed before they all left?
“It was a grand conspiracy; I went to the Grand Court four times and I came back because I was clean, the judge dismissed the case against me. Imagine, they brought me to court because of £300 but when they wanted to mention it in the press they said £80,000. Do you know what the judge said? He said ‘are we here to discuss that a professional footballer who played in the English Premier League for five years tried to fix a match for £300? This is ridiculous’. They scrutinised my account since I became a professional, they found nothing incriminating because I was clean. My brothers are clean.”