Brit finds out Gambian toyboy lied about age as worrying signs start to emerge
A British woman's marriage to a man 12 years younger than her in The Gambia started to unravel after he lied about his age.
Michelle, from Chingford, Essex, is just one year into her marriage with local Gambian handyman Ebou, who she met on her previous holidays in the west African country.
The 58-year-old is one of many European women who fly over to the country looking for holiday romances and even, like her, marriages.
Speaking to host Seyi Rhodes on Channel 4's eye-opening documentary Sex on The Beach, Michelle says: "He is 50 years old on November 11."
But when Seyi visits the couple at their Italian-style villa in Gambia, Ebou reveals he is actually 46 years old, which leaves the couple a 12-year age gap.
Baffled by Ebou's real age, Seyi asks Michelle on another occasion: "Do you remember when we first met, in your front room and I said how old is he?"
She replies: "Yeah, I said that he was 50 on his birthday. He said that before he is going to be 50 on his birthday, but obviously that's because I kept saying the age gap thing."
The presenter then asks when Michelle found out her husband's real age.
"I found out he wasn't 50 when we got married," Michelle reveals. "I knew he wasn't 50 but I wasn't sure."
"When we got married, I was looking at the paperwork. It tells you the age on it, so it told me he was 48.
"I turned around and said to him 'that's like a 10 years age gap, really'."
But lying about his age wasn't the only sign that all was not as it seemed.
Ebou apparently lives in a lavish house, which cost about £80,000 for construction works.
Seyi is understandably surprised at the surroundings, asking how he managed to afford it to which the local claimed he was a plumber.
"When I'm making a house you have to make it comfortable and very nice because maybe in the future I will have a family," he responds, adding that the money came from his own big contracts outside of his government work and his painting work.
Ebou says he started working on the house four years ago – even before meeting Michelle – and that his wife has never sent him money.
But Seyi starts to question the narrative. "I can see their relationship is quite close, they seem similar personalities, but he tells me he is 46 and Michelle was adamant he was 50," he says.
"When I add all the other inconsistencies, the size and luxuriousness of the house, the speed in which it was built, and the fact she says she didn't pay any money towards it – yeah I don't think I've got the full picture here."
The next day Seyi's driver claims Ebou's house is up for rent as he shows him a rental sign erected outside the house.
Seyi starts to question either Ebou has rented it for the duration of Michelle's stay or he does own the property but is looking to rent it out in secret.
He tells driver Kunta: "Even before I asked you, thing didn't check out. Like he owns this big house but there's no clothes, no belongings, there's nothing inside it.
"It looks like somebody just moved in yesterday. Maybe they rented it."
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