A self-styled businessman residing at Dome, a suburb of Accra, has been remanded into police custody by an Accra Circuit Court for allegedly defrauding a Member of Parliament (MP) to the tune of GH¢600,000.
Hon. Benjamin Kofi Ayeh, who is the MP for Upper Denkyere West in the Eastern Region, is said to have been approached by the accused person in 2012, to loan him the said amount to facilitate the documentation and transfer of $25 million from United States of America to Ghana.
Stephen Amoah Marfo allegedly presented some documents bearing the name of Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, Washington DC, to back his claims. The MP, who became convinced with the said document, went ahead to give the said amount to Stephen Amoah Marfo, only for him to go into hiding. The accused person was arrested by the police upon a tipoff by the complainant.
Stephen Amoah Marfo is facing the charges of defrauding by false pretence, contrary to section 131 of Act 29/60, and issue of false cheque, contrary to section 313A of Act 29/60.
He pleaded not guilty to all the charges leveled against him before the court presided over by Mr. Francis Obiri. He is expected to re-appear before the court in February 17, 2014.
Briefing the court about the fact of the case, the prosecutor, Chief Superintendent Tuaruka Duuti noted that in August 2012, Stephen Amoah Marfo collected GH¢600,000 from the complainant.
According him, the accused took the said amount under the pretext of using it to facilitate the documentation and transfer of an amount of $25 million in New York -U.S.A. to Ghana.
The accused promised Mr. Benjamin Kofi Ayeh that the process would be completed within two weeks, but failed to contact the complainant since then.
“Complainant, upon his personal investigation traced Stephen Amoah Marfo to his hideout at Dome. The accused upon seeing the complainant issued a Zenith Bank Cheque No.000157 dated 07/09/12 with a face valued of GH¢600,000 to be drawn by the complainant”.
Mr. Tuaruka Duuti further told the court that when the complainant presented the said cheque to the bank, it was dishonoured for lack of funds and the accused failed to pay the money whilst vacating his known place of abode.
In March 20, 2013, the complainant (Benjamin Kofi Ayeh) reported the case to the police leading to the arrest of accused person.
“Investigation disclosed that accused used a forged letter claiming to have originated from Financial Crime Enforcement Network, New York/ USA dated 12/08/12 to convince complainant but when the said letter was verified, it was found to be forged. After investigations, accused was accordingly charged and put before court”.
Source: Fatima Adam/The Chronicle