Menzgold, Payboy Saga: NAM1 Cash Gang Grabbed
Some officials of the firm, Payboy Company Limited, appointed recently by the defunct Menzgold Ghana Limited to negotiate debt settlements with its numerous clients, have been arrested by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).
EOCO confirmed the arrests in a statement signed by the Head of its Public Affairs, Jacqueline Avotri, but did not name the officials picked up.
“Some officials of Payboy Company Limited, an entity that purports to be into the Marketing and Promotion of Financial Technologies, have been arrested,” the anti-graft body said in the statement.
The statement indicated that initial investigations revealed that the company was operating without the requisite licenses from either the Bank of Ghana or the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“The general public is advised to be circumspect when dealing with companies or individuals, if it involves financial commitments,” EOCO admonished and noted that investigations were underway.
In mid-May, the defunct Menzgold Ghana Limited owned by the beleaguered Nana Appiah Mensah popularly called NAM1 said it had appointed the Payboy Company Limited to negotiate debt settlements with its numerous clients.
Menzgold, a gold collectible firm, made the announcement in a statement issued by its management and said that the digital marketing entity, Payboy, was to act as a third party entity.
According to the statement, Payboy was to negotiate and facilitate the payment of the investment of Menzgold's customers whose investments remain unpaid.
“Following advice given and subsequently reiterated in a press release issued on the 18th December 2019 with reference number; KBA 3015/19 by our counsel, we're happy to introduce PAYBOY COMPANY LIMITED; a digital payments marketing and promotions company, headquartered at No. 34 Nii Ako Nortei Street, Blohum Road, Dzorwulu, Accra, as the appointed third party entity with capacity to negotiate 'Debt Settlements Agreements' and to facilitate payments of same, in our committed resolve to ensure the eventual full debts settlements by Menzgold within the shortest possible time,” the Menzgold statement read.
However, the arrest of some of its officials by EOCO has forced Payboy Company to say it has terminated its agreement with defunct Menzgold Ghana Limited.
The company, in a statement, said the decision was arrived at an emergency meeting held last Friday, May 29, following the arrest of some its officials, indicating that “it was resolved that Payboy should opt out of the Payment Facilitation Agreement.”
The agreement was signed on February 7, 2020, according to the release issued by management of Payboy Company Limited.
Last year, KWAME AKUFFO and Co., lawyers for Menzgold, made it clear that they do not have the capacity to carry out payments to the company's creditors, as stated in a press release issued by the company.
A letter from the lawyers, reacting to the company's earlier release, had stated that, “Our attention has been drawn to the press release dated December 18, 2019, by Menzgold Ghana Limited (the client) in respect of the above-mentioned.”
“Paragraph four of the press release is to the effect that Kwame Akuffo and Co. Unlimited (the firm) on behalf of the client has been instructed to make payments to the creditors. We have informed the client that the firm does not have the capacity to carry out the said exercise. The firm is, therefore, unable to accept instructions in that regard. Under the circumstances, we have advised the client to instruct a third party entity to carry out the instructions in respect of the above-mentioned.”
NAM1, together with his wife, Rose Tetteh, and his sister, Benedicta Appiah (both of whom are at large) are altogether facing a total of 13 counts of defrauding by false pretences, money laundering, abetment and carrying on deposit-taking business without licence.
These include six counts of defrauding by false pretences, abetment, money laundering and carrying on deposit-taking business without licence.
His companies – Menzgold Ghana Limited and Brew Marketing Consult Limited – have also been charged with seven counts of defrauding by false pretences, and carrying on deposit-taking business without licence.
NAM1, on July 26, pleaded not guilty to all the charges. The court presided over by Jane Harriet Akweley Quaye then granted him bail to the tune of GH¢1 billion (about $185 million) with five sureties, three of which are to be justified.
Additionally, he was ordered by the court to report to the police every Wednesday.
Unable to satisfy the bail conditions, the defence team led by Kwame Boafo Akuffo later filed an application, asking for variation of the terms.
However, the presiding judge, after listening to both sides, though maintained the sum of GH¢1 billion, removed the condition of three of the five sureties to be justified.