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Crime & Punishment of Saturday, 9 September 2017


3 mobile money fraudsters busted

The police have apprehended a worker of one of the mobile telecommunication companies together with two others for allegedly tampering with details of mobile money merchants and using them to siphon money from their accounts.

The suspects, Aaron Laweh Kitcher, Reginald Sackey and Alfred Douglas Siayor – worker of the telecommunication company – were nabbed for fraud.

They were arrested when the telecommunication company detected their trick and reported the matter to the Cyber Crime Unit of the Ghana Police Service for investigations.

Briefing the media, Chief Superintendent Dr Gustav Herbert Yankson, director in-charge of the Cyber Crime Unit, said on July 22, 2017, one of the telecommunications companies (name withheld), reported at the unit of unauthorized interference of electronic recorded and stealing case against Alfred Douglas Siayor, one of its employees.

According to officials of the said company, Siayor, being part of a gang of suspected fraudsters, makes changes in the registration information of already registered mobile money merchants in their database.

After the changes are made, they then change the pin (personal identification number) and use a different SIM card to register and to take money from the merchants involved.

While investigations were ongoing, police detected that the suspects, with the help of Siayor, tampered with the information of the following merchants; Gold Green Office Equipment, Madwin Business Shopping Agency, Amygee Enterprise and Amevonnes Ventures and had their names in the telco database changed to the names of Reginald Sackey and Bismark Nyantakyi without authorization.

According to the company, after the change, the suspects went ahead to acquire a new SIM card and had the pin of their victims changed.

They then used the new number and pin to withdraw various monies that have been saved in the old account.

Suspects have used this method to steal money from the victims to the tune of GH¢8,852.

Alfred Douglas Siayor was subsequently arrested, and with his assistance, Aaron Laweh Kitcher and Reginald Sackey were also apprehended from their various hideouts.

Further investigations revealed that Reginald Sackey, who had a plan to steal from the above-mentioned merchants, sought the assistance of Aaron Laweh, who was a former employee of the company, to change the registration information of the affected merchants.

Suspect Aaron Laweh had then stopped working with the company and so he called Alfred Siayor who is still working there to effect the changes which he also did.

When Aaron Laweh Kitcher was arrested and searched, 51 pieces of SIM cards and Mobile Money Registration forms were retrieved from him.

Upon interrogation, Aaron Laweh admitted the offence and stated that he was asked by his alleged accomplice, Reginald Sackey, to change the SIM registration details of the aforementioned mobile money merchants into his name.

He said since he was no longer a staff of the telecommunication company, he contacted Alfred Douglas to do the changes for Reginald Sackey.

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