31 December 2012

Liberia: Gtbank Tellers in U.S.$88,000 Swindle

Peter N. Toby — As banks in the country experienced huge losses through burglary and fraud in 2012, more defendants are still being dragged into court even as the year ends, with the latest case indicting two former employees of GTBank for US$88,000 theft.

Police Friday charged Barcolleh Poronypae and Samuel Russell with theft of property based on a complaint from Cllr. Amara Sheriff, legal counsel for the Guarantee Trust Bank.

Except for Barcolleh Poronypae whose lawyer secured his release through a temporary criminal appearance bond, co-defendant Samuel Russell was remanded at the Monrovia Central Prison pending court trial.

According to Cllr. Sheriff, on 21 November 2012, the bank lost US$88,000 following the posting of a fake Ecobank cheque #MC-USD-0012126 at GTBank's Randall Street branch.

Preliminary police investigation established that defendant Barcolleh Poronypae and co-defendant Samuel Russell, on 21 November 2012 without any right, allowed Samuel Gyimah, GTBank's Cleaning Officer, to use his banking profile to post a fake Ecobnak cheque #MC-USD-0012126 valued at US$88,000.

Defendant Poronypae who headed Operation at GTBank's Randall Street branch, raised suspicion about the cheque being fake, but was later convinced by Samuel Gyimah that the cheque was genuine.

Though defendant Barcolleh Poronypae

earlier refused to cash the check, later authorized its payment of US$88,000 to Bass Urey, thus duping the bank.

Mr. Urey who received the cool cash, is presently on the run.

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