It has emerged that Ghana’s most wanted man, Nana Appiah Mensah, has been in the custody of Dubai police for at least one month.
The fugitive was arrested on December 7, 2018, a police statement said.
This is even before an Accra Circuit Court issued a warrant for his arrest January 9, 2019 and also alerted Interpol which has presence in 194 countries.
Nana Appiah Mensah is wanted for defrauding by false pretence and alleged money laundering. This was after his company Menzgold failed to pay thousands of clients’ returns on their investments.
There has been agitation from clients since September 2018 when the Securities and Exchange Commission ordered his company to shut down its so-called gold trading operation.
At Menzgold, clients buy what is now known as fake gold from another company owned by the embattled businessman, Brew Consult and deposit the collectibles with Menzgold.
They are promised 7% to 10% monthly returns described by investment experts as risky and unsustainable. Menzgold after months of hesitation is now being called a Ponzi scheme.
The emboldened description of the once-glamorous brand has set frightened customers fearing their investments have gone down the drain.
State security arrested Nana Appiah Mensah or popularly, NAM1. But even this arrest was not known until news of his escape broke last week.
NAM1 was on a self-recognizance bail but still managed to elude security to travel to Dubai – a feat that has fed fledging conspiracy theories.
The arrest in the United Arab Emirates, a member of Interpol, is however for a different incident albeit the same gold-trading business.
It is alleged the socialite and high-flying businessman was engaged in a “business gone bad” in Dubai. In essence, NAM1 has also been linked to a criminal offence in another jurisdiction.
If UAE authorities are to press charges, NAM1 may not come to Ghana to face the law. The government is expected to push for the release of the 34-year old Ghanaian.
According to the police statement, Ghanaian officials have paid the suspect a visit in Dubai. But the statement makes no comment about whether the visit was before the warrant was issued or after.
The news is expected to raise serious questions about Ghana’s intelligence-gathering services and how a public man-hunt for a Ghanaian businessman was a failure right from the beginning.