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24.11.2004 Crime & Punishment

Transporter in court for forgery of government documents

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Accra, Nov. 24, GNA - A 47 year-old Transporter, who forged a government letter head and signature of the Chief Director of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in order to defraud a company of 138 million cedis appeared at a Circuit Court in Accra on Wednesday. Prosper Akabutu charged with forgery of official document, possessing and uttering forged document and attempting to defraud, pleaded not guilty.

He was granted 120 million cedis bail with two sureties, one of which is to be justified.

The Prosecution said on October 12 Akabatu obtained a pro-forma invoice from Hardeep Cash and Carry Limited, dealers in electrical gadgets, in the name of the Ministry to supply 20 split air conditioners and seven Samsung colour televisions sets.

The Prosecution said the same day Akabatu submitted an order purported to have come from the Ministry of Finance, signed and stamped by the Chief Director to supply the items estimated 138 million cedis. When the Company verified the authenticity of the order at the Ministry, it came out that all the documents had been forged. The Director of the Company informed the National Security and Akabutu was arrested when the goods were being supplied to him at the Company's premises.

The Prosecution said Akabutu in his caution statement admitted the offence and mentioned one Mubarak Chinedu, a Nigerian, as the brain behind the act.

Akabutu, however, could not trace Chinedu's residence or his whereabouts.

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