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25.01.2007 Crime & Punishment

Police arrest members of bank stealing syndicate

By Ghana News Agency
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The Ghana Police Service has arrested three people suspected to belong to a syndicate that forge bank documents and manage to withdraw large sums of money.

Chief Superintendent of Police Angwubutoge Awuni, Accra South Divisional Police Commander, who made this known to the Ghana News Agency in Accra on Tuesday, said the Service was investigating how the syndicate managed to possess cheque leaflets and other vital documents belonging to their victims.

He said in December 2006, vigilant personnel at the Accra High Street branch of Standard Chartered Bank arrested a 59-year-old businessman, Kwaku Otuo Acheampong while attempting to cash a cheque with a face value of 8,200 Euros. The signature on the cheque was forged.

Chief Supt Awuni said before the suspect was handed over to the Police he had succeeded in cashing ¢241 million at the Opeibea branch of the bank from a different account.

He said Acheampong alleged in a Police statement that one George Osei, who paid him between 10 percent and 20 percent of every sum he was able to cash successfully, recruited him.

The Commander said on January 4, 2007, one James Brown Quainoo, 35, who worked at the Kotoka International Airport was arrested by the Police when he allegedly coerced one Lydia Ohenewaa, his former girlfriend with the alleged connivance of a Sales Agent with Stanchart, Manfred Tawiah, 30, to append her signature to some blank cheques.

He said Lydia, who suspected foul play reported the two suspects leading to their arrest.

Chief Supt. Awuni said Police preliminary investigations had revealed that the syndicate was working with internal collaborators and called on the bank officials to cooperate with the law enforcement agencies to expose these social misfits to boost public confidence in banks.

He said so far five suspected collaborators had been apprehended and would soon appear before court.

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