Belgian widow appeals to CJ over 2,000 Euros

A Belgian widow, Ms. Ingrid Van Dunnegem, has appealed to the Chief Justice (CJ), Ms. Sophia Akufo, to personally intervene in a case in which Lawyer Charles Habiah allegedly pocketed 2,000 Euros, he received on her behalf.

She said Mr. Habiah, her counsel, handling a fraud case, had not been truthful to her and she wanted the CJ to help bring the lawyer to book.

Ms. Dunnegem in a petition, signed and copied the General Legal Council, the CJ, said she was defrauded of 20,000 Euros by a Ghanaian, Frederick Bosompim, also known as Frederick Amando, in 2008 and 2009.

The victim said she and one Sonja Laurassens, a compatriot, also defrauded by a Nigerian, Timi Ade, hired the services of Mr. Habiah, who was paid GH¢1,000 and 2,012  Euros.

However, complainant claimed she never heard from the lawyer and neither did he respond to her numerous email messages since she left Ghana for Belgium in 2010.

Ms. Dunnegem alleged that on her return to Ghana in 2013, she and two others went to Haibiah’s office to demand proof of his service.

During their visit to Habiah’s office, complainant said the lawyer told them that he abandoned the case, because the investigator handing the case, Sargeant Gariba Joseph of the Kasoa police station, told the court that he (Joseph) had received an email from them (complainants) that they were no longer interested in the case.

Ms. Dunnegem alleged that there was an undertaking between Charles Habiah and the father of Bosompim to refund the 20,000 Euros to Habiah, adding that there was documentary proof that Mr. Habiah received the amount from the father of Bosompim.

Meanwhile, Mr. Habiah denied the claims of the Belgian.

The lawyer in his response to the petition said he handed over documents to the complainants when they visited him in his office at Kokomlemle, Accra.

Counsel said he did not refuse to handle the complainant’s case and that it was the complainant who indicated she was no longer interested in the cases, and denied he received 2,012 Euros from the complainant.

On allegation of undertaking between him and father of Bosompim, Mr. Habiah said the accused paid GH¢3,000 to the Kasoa police without his knowledge.

He said he later managed to retrieve GH¢2,000 out of the GH¢3,000 from the Kasoa Police.

The lawyer said Ms. Dunnegem later instructed him to use the GH¢2,000 to cover the expenses he had incurred in arresting Amando and Tim.

But, Ms. Dunnegem asked if Habiah was not directly involved in the negotiations for the payment of the money with the father of Bosompim, in what capacity did he receive GH¢2,000 from the police and why did he leave a difference of GH¢1,000 for the police.


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