Monday, April 30, 2012
Mother And Son Convicted - For Selling fake Cables
April 3, 2012 (Page 3 Lead) A forty-two-year-old businesswoman and her son have been convicted for distributing fake electrical cables to unsuspecting members of the public. The Managress of Penaabs Electricals Shop at McCarthy Hill in Accra, Evelyn Mingle, and her son, Daniel Owusu, were convicted on three counts of conspiracy, forgery of trademarks and defrauding by false pretence. They had pleaded not guilty to the charges but the James Town District Magistrate Court, presided over by Mrs Afi Kudomor, found them guilty and convicted them accordingly. Evelyn was sentenced to two months’ imprisonment with hard labour while Owusu was fined GH¢600 or in default serve 12 months in jail. The convicts forged the logo of Nexans Kabelmetal and sold fake cables to unsuspecting members of the public. One of their victims, Kofi Tawiah Maafo, lost GH¢3,500 after the convicts had supplied him with fake cables. In her judgement, the trial judge reprimanded the convicts for engaging in activities which deprived local electrical industries income from their genuine businesses. The court held that the prosecution had led evidence to prove the guilt of the convicts beyond reasonable doubt. It said it took into account the manner in which the convicts perpetrated the crime before arriving at its decision and expressed the hope that the sentence would serve as a deterrent. The trial judge commended the police investigator who went undercover to investigate the nefarious activities of the convicts. The facts of the case were that one of the complainants in the case, Mr Maafo, went to the convicts’ shop and requested to purchase Nexans PVC cables to wire his house. According to the prosecution, Evelyn gave him two invoices clearly indicating which cables were cheaper. One of the invoices quoted GH¢3,827 as the price for genuine Nexans Kabelmetal and GH¢2,333 for ones that she referred to as British wires. Mr Maafo expressed interest in the Nexans cables and reached an agreement with Evelyn to pay a final price of GH¢3,500. It said after Maafo had paid the said amount, the convicts gave him receipt and supplied him with the cables and said they were the genuine ones, but when the complainant got home, his electrician detected that a large chunk of the cables were fake. Maafo went back to the convicts’ shop and demanded for genuine Nexans cables but the convicts refused to collect or replace the fake ones. Their action compelled the complainant to report the incident to the management of Nexans Kabelmetal Limited, who replaced the fake cables and later reported the incident to the police for investigation. According to the prosecution, a witness bought 75 pieces of Nexans cables from the convicts’ shop and paid for them. Out of the 75 cables, only two had genuine Nexans cables tags. A search conducted in Evelyn’s storeroom revealed 100 boxes of fake cables. Some of the tags were taken to the Quality Control Department of Nexans Kabelmetal but they all turned out as fake. The convicts were arraigned after investigations.