Even though Ato Essien was given a 15-year jail sentence, the state would still pursue him, according to Deputy Attorney-General Alfred Tuah-Yeboah. Essien was the former CEO of the Capital Bank.
Mr. Tuah-Yeboah emphasized that in order to collect part of the GH¢53 million that the former CEO still owes the state, the state plans to confiscate his properties.
Mr. Tuah-Yeboah made it clear that Ato Essien is still obligated to pay his debts to the state despite receiving a 15-year term of hard labor.
“If he serves this sentence, the state will still pursue him and get the remaining amount and so it is not as if he is going to serve his sentence and then the amount will be forfeited. We are going to trace his properties and go after that in a civil action,” he said on Citi News Thursday.
According to Mr. Tuah-Yeboah, the state and Mr. Essien established a payment arrangement with the expectation that Mr. Essien would pay back the GH¢60 million he owed.
On Thursday, October 12, Mr. Essien was placed under arrest for not paying the state the entire GH¢90 million he had pledged to pay, after being offered many opportunities to make amends since December 2022.
Due to his involvement in the failure of Capital Bank, Ato Essien entered a guilty plea to 16 charges of theft, money laundering, and theft conspiracy.
On the other hand, he made a plea agreement with the state in accordance with courts Act 459, section 35(7).
In accordance with the agreement, Mr. Essien was supposed to pay GH¢90 million, which he did on December 13th for GH¢30 million cedis.
In 2023, he was required to pay the remaining GH¢60 million in three equal installments: GH¢20 million by April 28, GH¢20 million by August 31, and the final GH¢20 million by December 15, 2023.
One of the main terms of the deal was that if he failed to make any of the payments by the deadline, the court would not think twice about sending him to prison.
But Mr. Essien didn’t pay the fine, so he was sentenced on Thursday.