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03.03.2004 Regional News

Bank manager wanted by court

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Kumasi, March 3, GNA- The manager of the Bia-Toya Rural Bank in the Western region, whose arrest was ordered by a Kumasi circuit court for his alleged complicity in the theft of 225 million cedis belonging to the Dio-Jean Company, a Licensed Cocoa Buyer, is on the run. Also on the run are Charles Arthur, a purchasing clerk of the company believed to be an accomplice and a depot clerk, who allowed 385 bags of cocoa to be taken from his depot.

When the case was called on Tuesday, the prosecutor told the court that the police had not been able to locate Arthur and the depot keeper and this led the judge to ask the police to intensify their search for them.

The court, however, granted Isaac Addai, a purchasing clerk of the company and one of the accused persons, 600 million cedis bail with two sureties to be justified.

Addai pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and stealing and will re-appear on March 10.

Besides forging the cheque for the 225 million cedis and cashing the amount, Addai is also accused of collecting 385 bags of cocoa from the company's depot at Sefwi-Bodi.

The court expressed the hope that the accused will co-operate with the police to find the remaining accomplices.

Police Chief Inspector Margaret Damalie told the court that on February 2, this year, the accused and Arthur were issued with a cheque of 9.5 million cedis to cash at the Bia-Toya Rural Bank and then proceed to the Sefwi-Bodi depot and transport 400 bags of cocoa to Kumasi.

Instead, she said, the two clerks forged a cheque for 225 million cedis and with the alleged connivance of the bank manager, succeeded in cashing the money and then proceeded to the Sefwi-Bodi depot, convinced the watchman at the depot, collected 385 bags of cocoa and bolted.

The prosecutor said, however, that the police succeeded in arresting Addai at his hideout at Nnadieso, the boundary town between Ashanti and Eastern region.

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