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22.05.2004 General News

Fraud Case: CID Accused of Inaction

By Chronicle
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The Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service has been accused of inaction following its inability to arrest the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Jaylee Company Ghana Limited, Obrempong Sintim Poku III and his Korean partner for allegedly defrauding the Apostolic Faith Mission International Church (AFMI) of $5,875.

The Chronicle gathered that three years after the matter was reported to the CID no action had been taken against the suspects.

But the police have refuted the accusation of inaction saying, they had not received a response about the whereabouts of Jau Lee, the Korean partner from INTERPOL.

Deputy Superintendent of Police, Mr. David Eklu, head of the police public relations directorate, told The Chronicle that the police had not been able to make any arrests because they could not establish whether the chief paid the money to the agent or not.

Mr. Eklu suggested that in the absence of criminal charges by the police, the church could take civil action against Nana Opoku for the refund of the money.

Giving the background to the case, a source at the church said three years ago the church management decided to acquire a bus.

As a result a congregant, Nana Yaw said he could obtain the type of the vehicle the church needed through JAY LEE where he worked.

According to the source, a day after, Obrempong Opoku introduced himself to the Overseer of the church, Apostle de-Graft Osei-Kwame as the CEO of JAY LEE and that he could contact his partner in Korea, the President of J&S Trading Company Limited, Mr. Jau Lee for the order.

Nana Opoku presented a catalogue to Apostle Osei-Kwame to select the type of vehicle the church wanted after which he presented an invoice purported to have been facsimiled by Jau Lee.

The source said the invoice stated a price list that included the price of the vehicle as $5,000, import and conveyance fees of $800 and shipment fee of $4,500.

The church paid $5,875 to Nana Opoku from the proceeds of its anniversary harvest, but later the chief informed Prophet Osei-Kwame that Jau had demanded that the money should be paid into his foreign account to facilitate the transaction.

The money was therefore paid through the National Investment Bank into an account number, which Nana Opoku claimed belonged to Jau.

Three weeks later Nana Opoku presented a fax message to the church supposedly from his agent to inform him that the shipment fee had been increased from $ 4500 to $9,500.

The church said it raised a loan from its bankers and paid the money to the local agent of M & L Shipping Agency at the request of the Jau.

However a month later M&L called the church to pick up its money since no one had ordered from Korea a shipment to Ghana.

The source said JAY LEE informed the church later that Jau had said the shipment fee had again shot up to $11,500.

Following this development the church assigned one of its members in Korea to contact Jau to ascertain the truth of the information.

When the member met Jau he allegedly tried to convince him to lie to his church to pay the money so that they would share the booty, but he refused.

Based on this information the church reported the matter to the police.

Nana Opoku allegedly agreed to refund the money in three installments in two weeks but when the church contacted him for the money, he reportedly refused to pay because the church had dragged his name into disrepute.

The source said all efforts to get the CID to compel him to refund the money had proved futile.

However, The Chronicle's investigation has revealed that the foreign account number of Jau was a scam.

Sources at the National Investment Bank indicated that the account number was a temporary one for a specific purpose.