Retrieving MENZGOLD Customers Cash: Middlemen Pop Up…-As Security Agencies Dig Into PAYBOY

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Nana Appiah Mensah

A wonder company with the magic wand to retrieve money owed by the defunct MENZGOLD to its numerous customers has popped up in Accra.

PAYBOY, a one stop digital payment vendor, has mysteriously fashioned out plans that would help customers of MENZGOLD to retrieve their monies, after paying PAYBOY some nine percent of their principal sum locked up at MENZGOLD as processing fee for the whole deal.

An old office premises which was housing one of the subsidiaries of the infamous MENZGOLD is housing PAYBOY Company.

The Inquisitor has it that the security agencies, including the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), have started digging into the activities of PAYBOY Company over suspicion that the promoters had a hand in the activities of MENZGOLD.

It is suspected that the lead character of PAYBOY Company was thick in affairs relating to MENZGOLD and its affiliates.

PAYBOY would only deal with MENZGOLD customers with huge monies locked up and are ready to the pay upfront nine percent of the amount locked up and then the deal to retrieve the cash starts.

The Inquisitor is in possession of an audio tape in which one Gabriel was explaining how the PAYBOY system works.

According to the said Gabriel, on the audio, the MENZGOLD cash was not something that would come anytime soon, and that PAYBOY had been contracted as a third party to help pay the MENZGOLD.

He further said that the MENGOLD issue would travel for more than three to five years, but PAYBOY would settle customers within 18 months or less, after paying the upfront nine percent.

There are murmurings that the Gabriel on the audio is the same Gabriel who was working for Brew Consult, one of the many subsidiaries of MENZGOLD.

On the audio, he was heard telling the party on the other end that he had gone to collect the nine percent upfront payment from a Member of Parliament to start processing his payment.

He said: “All that is important is you come to our office and fill forms and agree to our terms and conditions and in eighteen months possibly ten months payment would be completed.”

Meanwhile, the BNI and other security agencies are digging into PAYBOY because of suspicion that the promoters have a direct link with MENZGOLD.

The Inquisitor has been told some of the promoters would be probed this week to properly check the background of the company.

Nana Appiah In Court

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Menzgold Ghana Limited, Nana Appiah Mensah, aka NAM1, is currently before court  for allegedly defrauding 16,000 customers of more than GH¢1.68 billion between January 2017 and September 2018.

He has been charged with two counts of abetment to defraud by false pretence and two counts of abetment to carry out banking business without licence, contrary to Section 6 (1) of the Banks and Specialised Deposit-taking Institutions Act, 2016 (Act 930).

Two of his companies — Brew Marketing Consult and Menzgold Ghana Limited — represented by him, have each been charged with defrauding by false pretence, contrary to sections 20 (1) and 13 (1) of the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29).

The two companies have also been charged with carrying out a deposit-taking business without licence, contrary to Section 6 (1) of Act 930.

Also facing the law are his sister and his wife, Benedicta Appiah and Rose Tetteh, respectively, who have been slapped with two counts of abetment to defraud by false pretence and two counts of abetment to carry out banking business without licence, contrary to Section 6 (1) of Act 930. The two women are, however, at large.

Particulars of the offences

A charge sheet sighted by the Daily Graphic stated that between January 2017 and September 2018, Brew Marketing Consult and Menzgold defrauded one Francis Agodzie and 16,000 others of more than GH¢1.68 billon.

It further accused the two entities of carrying out an illegal deposit-taking business during the same period.

The charge sheet explained that Mensah, Appiah and Tetteh aided Brew Marketing Consult and Menzgold to defraud the customers of the GH¢1.68 billion.

With regard to the charge of abetment to carrying out deposit-taking business without licence, the three suspects are accused of aiding the two companies to illegally carry out a deposit-taking business.

Arrival

NAM1 arrived at the Kotoka International Airport via Emirates Airline flight EK787 at 10.58 a.m. yesterday and was quickly whisked away by security personnel from Interpol Ghana and the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI).

He was accompanied on the flight by Interpol officials from Dubai, who handed him over to Interpol Ghana officials as soon as he disembarked from the plane.

An emaciated NAM 1 was spotted wearing an ash sweat suit with a hood, with which he covered his face to avoid being recognised. His hands were handcuffed behind him.

Flanked by two policemen, with other security men following closely behind, he limped slowly and managed to make it to the offices of the Financial Forensic Unit (FFU) on the first floor of the CID Headquarters.
As soon as he made it to the offices of the FFU, the frail NAM 1 pulled off the hood to reveal his bushy hair and unkempt moustache, as he awaited the arrival of his two lawyers, Messrs Kwame Akuffo and Kofi Supremo.

Background

The Ghana Police Service triggered an Interpol alert on Wednesday, January 9, 2019 to facilitate a search for NAM1 globally.

The police also obtained a warrant for the arrest of NAM 1 and two other directors of Menzgold on charges of defrauding by false pretences. The two directors are Rose Tetteh and Benedicta Appiah.

The arrest warrant followed reports by customers of the company to the effect that they had been defrauded.

Emeriti officials arrested Mensah on December 7, 2018, in line with investigations into a gold trading deal within the Emirate jurisdiction. Following his arrest, Ghanaian officials in Dubai visited him while he was in the custody of the Dubai Police.

A special delegation of security operatives also left Accra for Dubai in connection with his arrest to gather first-hand information regarding his arrest by the Emeriti authorities.

NAM 1

Nana Mensah shot to prominence in 2017 after his association with Ghana’s creative arts industry with his Zylofon Media Company Limited.
He signed Shatta Wale, Stonebwoy, Becca, Kumi Guitar, Joyce Blessing, all musicians, along with the actor Toosweet Annan and actress Benedicta Gafah, onto his Zylofon Media record label.
Before he ventured into the entertainment industry with Zylofon Media, he had operated the gold dealership firm, Menzgold Ghana Limited.

Nana Appiah is also the CEO of Brew Marketing Consult, Menzgold Espana S.L, T.I.A. Holdings (USA), Brew Energy Company Limited, Brew Realty Company Limited and Cheetah Security Co. Limited.
He is married to Rose Tetteh, who is the CEO of Rozzy’s Collection, a fashion shop in Accra, and they have a son.

Aggrieved customers

In 2017, Menzgold came under fire from two regulators, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which fire intensified last year.

The SEC, in a notice published in the Monday, October 2, 2018 edition of the Daily Graphic, informed the public that Menzgold Ghana Limited had “neither been licensed nor its adverts sanctioned by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to carry out any activity in the capital market”.

According to the notice, Menzgold was not a SEC-regulated entity because its operations contravened Section 3 (c) of the Securities Industries Act, 2016 (Act 929), which dealt with the registration, licensing, authorisation and regulation of entities in the securities market.

The BoG also cautioned the public against depositing money with Menzgold because it had not been licensed to take deposits.
However, Nana Mensah called the bluff of the BoG, describing the statement as a joke and a diversionary tactic. Later, the SEC directed Menzgold to suspend its gold trading operations with the public.
Despite initial protests, Menzgold complied with the directive but failed to fully pay its numerous customers whose investments fell due, a situation which later blossomed into a series of protests across major cities such as Kumasi and Accra.

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