The Accra High Court has given the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) the green light to auction the properties of the defunct gold firm, Menzgold Ghana Limited.
In January 2019, the Financial and Economic Crimes Division of the Accra High Court, presided over by Justice Helen Amoah, froze the assets of Menzgold following a motion by EOCO. Other assets of entities run by the CEO of Menzgold, Nana Appiah Mensah, aka NAM 1, were also frozen by the court.
The affected entities were Zylofon Art Complex, Brew Marketing Consult, Star Madrid Football Club, Zylofon Music and Media Company Limited, Brew Energy Company Limited and G-Tech Automobile Service.
Also, two properties located at Trassaco Valley, an uncompleted residential property and 510 acres of land said to belong to NAM 1 were also frozen by the court.
Greenlight for auction
The move by the Financial and Economic Crimes Division of the Accra High Court, presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, followed a motion filed by EOCO praying the court to allow it to auction the properties of the defunct company.
Moving the motion Tuesday, [January 18, 2021], lawyer for EOCO, Mr Abu Issa, submitted that EOCO and other law enforcement agencies investigated Menzgold and found out that it had engaged in money laundering and other serious offences.
The motion, he said, was premised on Sections 2 and 3 of the EOCO Act, 2010 (Act 804) which gave the law enforcement agency the power to undertake such action. Justice Asare-Botwe granted the motion and said the court’s order for the auctioning of Menzgold’s properties would be ready Wednesday (January 19, 2021).
What the law says
Section 2 of Act 804 stipulates that the objects of EOCO are to prevent and detect organised crime, as well as facilitate the confiscation of the proceeds of crime.
Per Section 3 (a) of Act 804, EOCO has the mandate to investigate crimes such as financial loss to the state, money laundering, human trafficking, prohibited cyber activity, tax fraud and other serious offences.
Section 3(b) of Act 804 gives EOCO the power to take steps to recover the proceeds of such crimes under its mandate.
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