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30.06.2009 General News

AG takes over case of forgery against lawyers

By GNA
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Accra, June 29, GNA – The Office of the Attorney General has taken over the case involving two legal practitioners standing trial at an Accra Circuit Court for forgery and fraud.

The two, Joseph Kwame Owusu Asamani and Ekow Amua-Sekyi, are jointly charged for conspiracy, forging judicial service writ of summons, deed of assignment documents and uttering forged documents.

They were alleged to have forged the judgment of a High Court Judge, Mr Justice Ofori-Atta, compelling Mr Howard Eric Ewen, Managing Director of Keegan Resources, to issue a cheque of 850,000 dollars to Asamani.

When Asamani received the money, Amua-Sekyi signed as witness.

At Monday's sitting, the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Paul K Frimpong informed the court that they were complying with the directive of the High Court, which had earlier rescinded the bench warrant for Amua-Sekyi.

He was therefore seeking a month's adjournment.
The two accused persons and their counsel were absent.

The court presided over by Mr D.E.K. Daketsey, was adjourned to July 30.

On June 22, this year, Mr James Agalga, who represented Asamani, told the court that his client had been taken ill and had not been served.

There were, however, no indications as to why Amua-Sekyi was not in court.

The court therefore issued a bench warrant to arrest Amua-Sekyi, saying his non-appearance before the court constituted disrespect.

The facts before the court named the complainant as Mr Samuel Gordon Etroo, a businessman in Tarkwa.

The prosecution said on March 14, 2007, Asamani acted as a lawyer for Axex Company Limited and obtained judgment in a suit against Kwame Opoku and two other defendants.

After the judgment, Asamani conspired with Amua-Sekyi who acted as counsel for Mr Etroo and forged a suit number BMIS 350/07.

They further gave a title of the writ as Alex Company Limited.

The accused persons fraudulently inserted SAMETRO Company Limited as the fourth defendant in the writ although the said company was not a defendant in the suit.

The prosecution said on March 18, 2007, the accused persons forged a judgment titled Axex Company Limited versus four other defendants and inserted an order by Mr Justice Ofori Atta for the recovery of a mine known as Esaase Gold Mine.

In addition, they prepared a Deed of Assignment unknown to the complainant, Gordon Etroo, scanned his signature on it and registered it at the Lands Registry and presented same to Mr Eric Ewen, Managing Director of Keegan Resources, who also signed.

The two lawyers without the knowledge of Gordon Etroo and Mr Kwame Opoku initiated a civil suit number BL35/07 and initialled it as Kwame Opoku versus SAMETRO Company Limited.

The two appeared before another Judge, Mr Justice Lartey Young on March 20, 2007. At the said court, Amua Sekyi made certain admissions upon, which the trial judge ordered that Bonte Esaase Mine be assigned to Kwame Opoku.

With that judgment, the accused persons obtained the consent of the then Minister of Land, Forestry and Mines to assign Esaase Mines to Howard Eric Ewen of Keegan Resources.

On June 18, 2007 Mr Ewen issued Stanbic Bank cheque for 850,000 dollars to Asamani to complete the fraudulent assignment of Bonte Gold Mine from Mr Etroo to Mr Ewen.

Prosecution said on June 18, 2007 Asamani issued a hand written receipt and Amua-Sekyi signed as witness.

GNA

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