A private legal practitioner, Samson Lardi Anyenini says CEO of gold dealership firm, Menzgold could face 10 years or more in jail if found guilty of a serious offence by the court.
He said although it may be premature to determine on what charges Nana Appiah Mensah would be tried, he may be in for a long while if the defrauding by false pretence and money laundering offences for which an arrest warrant has been issued are proven.
He told Raymond Acquah on UPfront that it was essential to establish clearly the specifics of the matters for which is being brought to court.
“It will be important for example to know in detail the person who has made the complaint and the specific nature of the complaint. If you know that, then you will begin to appreciate the consequences that will follow. You may have defrauded by false pretences in an insignificant amount of money and you may have defrauded by false pretences over a significant amount of money.
“The source of the money can also become the main issue and in this circumstances…where issues of the potential money laundering charge that may also come. These are labelled in our law as serious offences and for as long as they are serious offences - a second-degree felony, you are looking generally about 10 years,” he said.
An arrest warrant has been issued for Nana Appiah Mensah’s arrest
Section 131 of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29) stipulates “Whoever defrauds any person by any false pretence shall be guilty of a second-degree felony.”
Mr Anyenini believes that once the specific offence committed is identified the exact demand of the police on NAM 1 will be clear.
However, he added that for as long as the penalty is not prescribed, the law recommends a 10 year jail term, “but we may get to know, because we are hearing that there could be a money laundering matter and several other issues that have to do with serious crimes and therefore it may be premature to look at it within the confines of defrauding by false pretences rather than some other more serious felonies.”
A warrant for the arrest of embattled businessman Nana Appiah Mensah has been issued in Accra after his investment company, Menzgold, failed to refund client’s monies.
The Circuit Court, which issued the warrant for the arrest of the CEO of the gold dealership company, said NAM 1, as he is popularly called, is wanted for defrauding by false pretence. He is also wanted for money laundering.
The arrest warrant is a first step in bringing the Menzgold CEO to book for operating an unlicensed business.
Menzgold has a wide range of clients who found the promised of 7% to 10% interest on their gold collectables deposited with the company attractive.
The customers are said to include bankers, small-scale miners, top military and police officers, clergymen and women and Ghanaians living abroad.
For frustrated clients of Menzgold who have their investments locked up in the company for months, this warrant is long overdue.
Desperate and angry, they have been demonstrating for months urging government intervention in retrieving their monies.
The arrest warrant issued by Ghana’s court will put all Interpol member counties on high alert. These countries will arrest, detain and cause the extradition of NAM 1 if he is found in any of them.