Wiliam Ato Essien
An Accra High Court has rejected the terms of settlement reached by former Chief Executive Officer of defunct Capital Bank, Wiliam Ato Essien and the Office of the Attorney General to refund GHS90 million he stole from the bank.
Mr. Essien is on trial with defunct bank’s former Managing Director, Fitzgerald Odonkor as well as Tetteh Nettey, a former Managing Director of MC Management Service owned by Mr. Essien for stealing from the GHS620 million liquidity support give to the struggling bank by the Bank of Ghana
The curt after three years of trial was set to deliver its judgement today but Ato Essien through his lawyers had reached an agreement with the prosecution to plead guilty and refund the GHS90 million he stole.
Per the terms of the agreement, he has already paid GHS30 million and had up to one year within which to pay the remaining GHS60 million
But Justice Eric Kyei Baffour, the presiding judge said in his candid opinion the terms of agreement are no acceptable to court.
He said the money was stolen in 2013 at the time when the exchange rate was GH3.70 to $1 and allowing Ato Essien to pay GHS90 million nine years down the line would be making crime attractive.
He, therefore, rejected the terms of settlement and adjourned the case to December 23, 2022, to allow the parties to discuss the exact amount o be paid and to address the court on whether section 35 is applicable in this case.
BY Gibril Abdul Razak