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Banker, mechanic in court for allegedly stealing customers’ money

A member of staff of GCB Bank and an auto mechanic last Thursday appeared before the Accra Circuit Court for allegedly conniving and stealing GH₵356,100 from various accounts of customers of the bank.

The two were each granted bail in the sum of GH₵400,000, with four sureties each, by the court, presided over by Mrs Abena Oppong Adjin-Doku.

According to the bail conditions, each of the sureties must be justified, while Amponsah and Alhassan must also deposit their passports at the court registry.

The two are also supposed to report themselves to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service every Wednesday.

Hearing of the case continues on December 29, 2016.

Cloned cheques

Amponsah and Alhassan are said to have set up a clandestine operation in which the cheque books of some high-value customers of the bank were cloned and later withdrawals made from the affected customers’ accounts.

Amponsah is alleged to have taken photographs of signature mandates, cheque book serial numbers and other sensitive information of the affected customers and handed them over to Alhassan.

According to the prosecution, so far investigations had revealed that there were four accounts from which the withdrawals had been made.

Seven other accounts, it said, had also been identified to have been affected by the scheme.

Investigations into those accounts are currently underway.

Facts

Amponsah, the prosecution, said was stationed at the Corporate Banking Department of GCB Bank in Takoradi in the Western Region, while Alhassan was a customer of the bank.

Between September and November 2016, it said, the management of GCB Bank received several complaints of fraudulent withdrawals from various customers’ accounts.

It explained that the withdrawals were done with cheques which were later established to be “cloned cheques’’.

“The cloned cheques were presented at branches of the bank and various withdrawals were made from the affected accounts,’’ it said.

Alleged involvement

The prosecution added that investigations revealed that Amponsah used his identification number to make several enquiries about the affected accounts prior to the withdrawals.

Amponsah, it stated, was arrested and he “disclosed to the police that it was upon the request of Alhassan that he made enquiries about the said accounts’’.

“He also disclosed that he took photographs of signature mandates, cheque book serial numbers and other confidential details of high-value customers which he forwarded to Alhassan and his accomplices.

“Six of the various cloned cheques presented at the various branches of the bank resulted in the theft of GH₵356,100 from four affected accounts,’’ the prosecution added.

It further explained that seven other accounts were also affected by the scheme.

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