Belle Gibson says she has been adopted by an Ethiopian community. Picture: Facebook
Belle Gibson says she has been adopted by an Ethiopian community. Picture: Facebook

Call me Sabontu: Belle Gibson ‘adopted’ by Ethiopian community

Cancer con artist Belle Gibson has appeared in a bizarre video claiming she has been adopted by a Melbourne Ethiopian community who have given her a new name.

Dressed in a headscarf, Gibson is addressed by the name "Sabontu" and says she feels "blessed to be adopted" by the community.

Ms Gibson claims she has been part of the local Oromo community after a volunteering stint and says she is "deeply invested with the community because I saw the character and the values of your people".

She ends the 11-minuted video - posted to Facebook by Shabo Media late last year - by praising "Lord Allah".

The Oromo are the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia and a large number live in Victoria.

The fraudster was yesterday issued with a warrant to hand over valuable assets to pay her growing fine.

Representatives from the Sheriff's Office attended the bogus health and wellness blogger's Northcote home to execute a "warrant of seizure and sale on items belonging to Ms Gibson", Consumer Affairs Victoria confirmed.

It is not clear what items were taken.

 

Belle Gibson leaves the federal court in Melbourne flanked by her legal team. Aaron Francis/The Australian
Belle Gibson leaves the federal court in Melbourne flanked by her legal team. Aaron Francis/The Australian

In the Facebook video, Ms Gibson speaks to the interviewer at length about Ethiopian politics and urges members of the Oromo community to be strong and ethical.

"Defend yourselves and your honour and identity.

"Don't act alone, don't act without morals", she says.

Ms Gibson expressed concerns that "back home people are being arrested and shot in the street because of their Oromo identity.

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Gibson, 28, owes more than $500,000 in fines, penalties and interest after she was found to have breached consumer law by duping consumers into buying her wellness app and cookbook, The Whole Pantry, on the basis of false claims she cured her brain cancer with natural remedies and healthy eating.

Last year she faced a hearing at the Federal Court to explain why she had made no payments towards her hefty fines.

Ms Gibson said she could not afford to pay the penalty, and was subsequently grilled over holidays to Africa, Bali, Adelaide and the Gold Coast.

carly.waters@news.com.au


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