Kwame Osei Yeboah, an employee of the defunct uniBank who was absorbed into Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited (CBG), accused of illegally transferring GH₵11.2 million of depositors’ money to some microfinance companies, has been remanded into police custody by an Accra Circuit Court.
He is to reappear on December 4, 2018.
Presenting the facts to the court, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Nanegbe said until August 2018, the accused was a Relationship Officer at the defunct uniBank Ghana Limited.
He stated that the accused was stationed at the Kokomlemle head office branch of the bank, and his duties were mainly managing customers’ accounts.
According to him, Rita Agyekumwaa Mpiani, now a former staff of Unicredit Savings and Loans Company, allegedly assisted Yeboah to forge the signature of a customer called Adwoa Konadu to illegally withdraw money from the victim’s accounts.
The prosecutor noted that in January 2016, Konadu a businesswoman and a customer of Unicredit Savings and Loans Company, informed her Relationship Officer, Rita Agyekumwaa Mpiani, that she was no longer interested in keeping her investment with a non-bank financial institution.
DSP Nanegbe told the court that Rita Agyekumwaa Mpiani introduced Adwoa Konadu to Yeboah, a Relationship Officer of uniBank, a sister company of Unicredit.
Konadu agreed to move her investment to uniBank, and had an account opened for her by Yeboah.
According to the prosecutor, investigations revealed that when cheque books were issued by uniBank in the name of Konadu, Yeboah allegedly withheld one booklet, with serial number 000051-000100.
DSP Nanegbe stated that Yeboah mastered the signature of Konadu.
According to police investigations so far, Yeboah informed Konadu about the bank’s interest rate for fixed deposit, which was the only product of the bank available.
Konadu agreed and started moving her funds from other banks and other business resources into the fixed deposit account opened for her at uniBank.
The court heard that without the knowledge and consent of Konadu, Yeboah started forging the signature of Konadu in the cheque book he had kept.
Police investigations so far revealed that Rita Agyekumwaa Mpiani, in partnership with Yeboah allegedly forged signatures to move funds from the victim’s account and invested the funds with five different microfinance companies of their choice.
The prosecutor said investigations established that in January 2016, Yeboah, together with Rita Agyekumwaa Mpiani, withdrew GH₵2 million from the account of Konadu and invested same with one microfinance company.
The investment was for a period of six months at a rate of 27%.
According to the prosecution, in May 2016, the two accused persons once again used forged cheques to move an additional GH₵2 million from the account to another microfinance company for another six months at 25% interest rate.
Similarly, in February 2017, the accused used forged cheques to move another GH₵3 million from the account of Konadu to a third microfinance company, the prosecution told the court.
DSP Nanegbe explained that at this point, two other accused persons who were working with the third microfinance company as marketing officers left to establish two new microfinance companies.
The court heard that in June 2017, Yeboah debited another GH₵1 million from Konadu’s account to one of the microfinance companies established by the two marketing officers who left their former company.
Yeboah is also said to have moved another GH₵3 million from Konadu’s account to a second microfinance established by the two marketing officers who left their former company.
DSP Nanegbe alleged that seven accused persons were aware that the funds did not belong to Yeboah but deliberately opened account with uniBank to facilitate theft of the funds from Konadu’s account.
It was established that all the funds from the account of Konadu were invested at interest rates between 25% and 32% biannually.
Prosecution accused Yeboah of forging investment advice on uniBank letterheads for Konadu to deceive her into believing that her funds were with uniBank.
Prosecution alleged that Yeboah and Rita Agyekumwaah received between 0.5% and 6% finder’s fee on funds transferred from Konadu’s account to the microfinance companies.
DSP Nanegbe told the court that the investments rolled over biannually, and Yeboah hived off the difference in the interest rates to his own benefit.
In October 2018, Konadu tried to make a withdrawal from her account, but had her cheque returned.
Upon a request to the bank, it was detected that a total of GH₵8.5 million had been stolen from her account.
A report was made to the police, and during investigation, it was detected that a total of GH₵11.2 million has since remained with Yeboah and the microfinance companies.