An Accra circuit court has remanded Nana Appiah Mensah, also known as NAM1, the Chief Executive of Menzgold, into police custody.
The businessman was detained in police custody yesterday, when he arrived at the Kotoka International Airport, Accra, from Abu Dhabi, United Emirates for allegedly defrauding customers of more than GH¢1.6 billion.
His charges were not read in court, but a document intercepted by the Ghanaian Times indicated that Nana Mensah may be charged with abetment to defraud and abetment to carrying banking business without licence.
According to the document, two of Nana Mensah’s companies, Menzgold and Brew Marketing Consult Limited, would be charged with two counts of defrauding by false pretence.
Also, facing different charges are Benedicta Appiah, the wife of NAM1, and Rose Tetteh, his sister-both at large.
Appearing before Mrs Jane Harriet Naa Akweley, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) James Asare, urged the court to remand the accused into police custody to enable the police complete investigation.
He said in October, 2018, the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) received complaints from more than 16,000 people to the effect that the gold dealer, acting through Benedicta and Rose asked the public to deposit money for a fixed period.
The court heard that customers’ deposits would be used to purchase gold from Menzgold at an interest rate of 10 per cent per month.
Upon such representation, the prosecutor stated that customers deposited various sums amounting to more than GH¢1.6 billion.
The court heard that a complaint was lodged with the police, but the accused locked their offices and left the jurisdiction.
He said a warrant of arrest was issued for the arrest of the accused and on July 11, 2019, Nana Mensah was arrested upon arrival at the Kotoka International Airport.
The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) secured a court order to freeze all landed properties and vehicles belonging to NAM 1, including Menzgold Ghana Limited and Menzgold Office Complex, Zylofon Art Complex.
After months of speculations about the case and demonstrations by aggrieved customers, the embattled CEO won his court case in Dubai, with an order by the court that Dubai-based company, which called for his arrest and later prosecution, to pay him all outstanding debts.
The case had been adjourned to July 26, 2019.
BY MALIK SULLEMANA