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18.11.2008 Crime & Punishment

Businessman In Court For Fraud

> Businessman In Court For Fraud

An Accra-based businessman is alleged to have duped three foreign nationals, including a Reverend Minister, to the tune of GH¢513,628 under the pretext of securing them diplomatic appointments in two of Ghana's consulates abroad.

Nana Yaw Apea-Dankwa was alleged to have collected the money from Reverend Habil Bolin, Sture Abrahamsson and Oleksandr Chemenko with the promise that he would use it to influence government officials to facilitate their appointment as consulates in Sweden and Finland.

Apea-Dankwa, who communicated with his victims through the Internet, sent letters purported to have been signed by officials at the Ministries of Justice and Foreign Affairs as part of his efforts to convince them to send money to him.

He has appeared before the Accra Circuit Court, charged with defrauding by false pretences.

He pleaded not guilty to the charge and was remanded to reappear on November 26, 2008 to enable the police to complete investigations into the matter.

According to the prosecution, a lawyer lodged a complaint with the police on behalf of his clients who were all living abroad and who had been duped by the accused person over the past eight years.

The facts of the case were that the accused person got in touch with the victims through the Internet some time in 2000 and after chatting with them on several occasions, he promised to get them employed as Ghana's consulates in Sweden and Finland.

Apea-Dankwa allegedly managed to send letters purported to have been signed by government officials to his victims who got convinced.

They allegedly began sending money to the accused person, who said he would use the money to convince the authorities to get them appointed.

In the course of the communication, the victims allegedly sent $172,676, GH¢75,278 and 154,338 Euros to the accused person.

After several years of communication, the victims realised the accused person was in no position to assist them to get the diplomatic appointments.

They, accordingly, got in touch with their lawyer who subsequently reported the matter to the police.

Investigations led to the arrest of the accused who had then fled his matrimonial home and had sought refuge at a house in Tesano, Accra.

Investigations continue into the case.

Story by Mabel Aku Baneseh

   

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