Embattled Nigerian Instagram celebrity, Ramon Abbas, known as ‘hushpuppi’ and ‘The Billionaire Gucci Master’ has been denied bail by a Federal Migrate Court in the US.
The judge on Monday in Chicago told the 37-year old Ramon, that he will remain detained until his trial later this year over money laundering allegations.
His lawyer, Gal Pissetzky, had on Thursday last week applied for his client to leave jail with an electronic tag and live with his girlfriend’s uncle in Homewood, Illinois.
Mr Pissetzky said his client’s job as an Instagram influencer paid for the $10,000 monthly rent on his luxury Dubai flat. Adding that, he had too much to lose to flee the country.
“He is loved and respected. He is a celebrity. I don’t see the reason why he would want to ruin his credibility in the world and his status rather than stay here and face this allegation.
Anywhere he goes, people will know. Having grown up very poor in Nigeria, Mr Abbas is now paid to pose with high-priced items such as Louis Vuitton bags that people would buy after seeing his posts on Instagram.
He is an influencer. That’s a job today, as much as it is hard to imagine. That’s a full-time job,” Mr Pissetzky told a judge in Chicago by videolink.
Judge Jeffrey Gilbert presiding in the Northern District of Illinois ruled that Abbas will be transported to Los Angeles by the U.S. Marshals Service, and will not be allowed to stay with his girlfriend’s uncle.
The judge stressed that he was satisfied that Mr Abbas was a flight risk and he would remain in custody until he was taken to a court in California.
“You’ve got to be doing something to pay $10,000 for an apartment in Dubai,” he said.
Throughout the hearing Abbas’s lawyer denied that his client was a flight risk or a danger to the community, repeatedly rejecting the allegations made against his client by the FBI’s affidavit posted earlier this month.
The primary allegation leveled by the FBI is that Abbas was part of a network that made “hundreds of millions of dollars” from business email compromise frauds and other scams.