After months of intensive legal battle in the US$124,730 theft case involving an Indian National, Criminal Court ‘C’ at the Temple of Justice yesterday brought down a guilty verdict against Sanju Jose Thayakeril, an Indian businessman and his female conspirator, Lorena Reeves.
Thayakeril and Reeves, Judge Yusif Kaba said, actually duped their partner, Emmanuel Togba of the US$124,730, who they had earlier convinced to be a shareholder in their self-established MAXX Rental Incorporated, a car rental services company.
Judge Kaba also said his justification was the evidences both oral and documentary the defense team and prosecution presented during the hearing of the matter.
At Yesterday’s hearing, Judge Kaba did not announce any prison terms for the defendants, but recommended Thayakeril and Reeves to the Bureau of Correction and Rehabilitation at the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) to conduct a week of pre-sentence arrangement, which will establish as to whether or not, the defendants have had previous criminal records before sentencing them.
In 2015, the court records alleges, Thayakeril and Reeves established MAXX Rental Incorporated, but getting loan from a bank was very difficult.
Because of the difficulties to secure bank loan, the defendants organized the syndicate, where they managed to convince Togba, who owned lots of properties, including a seven bedroom house, to acquire share in the business, which they were successful to doing so.
Based on that arrangement, Togba loaned his building to the Guaranty Trust Bank (GT, Bank) in exchange for US$150,000, which the bank issued to them.
The syndicate was discovered when Togba decided to check the company’s account at the bank.
To protect Togba’s interest, the defendants cleverly issued him 35 percent share and he was subsequently appointed as chief executive officer (CEO), the document claimed.
Thayakeril and Reeves also appointed themselves as shareholder and accountant respectively.
Using their respective positions and with criminal motive, the defendants convinced Togba, who trusted Thayakeril and Reeves, agreed and opened an account in the name of the so-called MAXX Rental Incorporated at the GT. Bank.
The account also allowed for any two of the three to withdraw from the bank.
Thayakeril and Reeves took the opportunity of two of three signing before a withdrawal made out of the company’s account, they then engaged themselves into preparing ‘fictitious’ vehicle rental requests.
One of the rental requests, the defendants claimed, were made by the World Food Program, which the UN agency denied making any rental business with the defendants.
Thayakeril and Reeves used the WFP name to raise a payment voucher and subsequently withdrew the US$124,730 out of the MAXX Rental account with the knowledge of their CEO, Togba, the record alleged.