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Crime & Punishment Wed, 31 Jan 2007

Court fines electrician six million cedis for posing as ECG official

Cape Coast, Jan 31, GNA - John Donkor, a 31-year-old electrician, who posed as an official of the Cape Coast branch of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and duped two households of monies totalling 800,000 cedis, was on Tuesday fined a total of six million cedis by a circuit court at Cape Coast.

Donkor, who pleaded guilty to impersonation and not guilty to extortion, would go to prison for 24 months in hard labour if he fails to pay the fine. He was granted bail in the sum of 30 million cedis for each case of extortion, with a surety each to be justified, and is to reappear on February 26.

Giving the facts of the first case, Chief Inspector Augustine Amonoo told the court presided over by Mr Beresford Acquah that on November 15 last year, Donkor posed as a staff of the ECG and went to the house of a couple at Nyamedom, in the Abura-Asebu-Kwamankese district, and after 93manipulating" their meter, told them that the computers in the ECG offices in Cape Coast had detected that they had illegally connected electricity to their premises. He then threatened that if they did not pay one million cedis, they would be arrested and brought down to Cape Coast.

The court heard that the couple pleaded and beat down the amount to 500,000 cedis, but when they demanded a receipt, he told them that he would bring it later. He said after waiting for sometime without Donkor showing up with the receipt they came to the ECG office in Cape Coast, where they were told that Donkor was once a casual labourer and that he had been laid off. He said Donkor went into hiding and was identified by the couple when he was arrested for a similar offence on January 26, this year, through which he extorted 300,000 cedis from one Mr Jim Morgue at Abura a suburb of Cape Coast.

Source: GNA