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31.05.2007 General News

Alleged internet fraudster remanded in custody

By The Chronicle

A 22 year old unemployed, Bernard Essuman has been remanded into police custody to reappear in court on June 5 2007 for the offence of Internet fraud.

Essuman, who is being charged for the offence of stealing, had not yet had his plea taken by the circuit court trying his case.

Briefing the court on the facts of the case, the prosecutor, Dr Gabriel Dzandu from Serious Fraud Office, Ghana informed the court that the accused person since completion of his second cycle education in the year 2002 had been unemployed.

He said at the end of the year 2006 and early months of 2007, the SFO Ghana received intelligence report from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to the effect that the accused person among some other suspects is using the name 'Bismark Nyarko and his real name is Bernard Essuman interchangeably to engage in online purchases of goods from Canada using stolen credit cards to effect payment and shipping to Ghana.

The SFO Ghana having been provided with the particulars of the accused person conducted a background check, where a system was put in place to ensure his apprehension if and when he appears to take delivery of some of the stolen parcels.

On May 10 this year, in an attempt to take delivery of a stolen parcel, he was arrested and upon interrogations admitted the offence and disclosed that he makes a living through the use of the Internet.

According to the facts the accused person confessed that by some means, he managed to obtain the stolen credit card from collaborators in Vietnam (not Verified) where he proceeds to make the purchase of merchandise goods such as laptops, cameras, pen drives and other personal effect from shops in Canada.

Dr Dzandu further informed the circuit court trying the case that the accused person, then linked up with his pen pals in Canada for them to ship the items to him in Ghana where he uses a Ghanaian passport numbered H1772569 in the name of his brother Bismark Nyarko but affixed with he, the accused person's picture on it to take delivery of the items.

According to the prosecution during investigations, the accused admitted that a laptop computer, Bank Saving Pass Book and two mobile phones were found in his house where part of the items he procured through the illegal activity.

Dr Dzandu further told the court chaired by Justice Frank Manu that the RCMP had informed that the amount of monies withdrawn through the abuse of about 2,000 stolen credit cards is $591, 185 (Canadian Dollars) adding that the case was still under investigation.

Source: The Chronicle