Restitution of GH55m granted with a grace term for Ato Essien

Essien - Rapid News GH

The Accra High Court has given William Ato Essien, the founder of the now-defunct Capital Bank, until July 4 of this year to pay the state’s GH55 million compensation.

If he doesn’t make the restitution payment by the deadline, he can end up in jail.tre

Essien, a convicted felon, was supposed to pay the state GH $60 million in three installments of GH $20 million, but she missed the first installment due date on April 28 this year and paid GH $5 million on May 10.

During the hearing yesterday, Justice Eric Kyei Baffour presided over, and the court made the compassionate decision to postpone the case until July 4 rather than hear the Attorney-General’s (A-G) request for the convict to be imprisoned for missing the first installment deadline on April 28.

After Essien testified in his affidavit in response to the Attorney General’s motion that he anticipated receiving some money by the end of June to enable him to pay the restitution, Justice Kyei Baffour, a Justice of the Court of Appeal, acting as a High Court judge, decided to grant Essien a grace period.

Essien was cautioned by Justice Kyei Baffour that if the money was not paid by the next postponed date, the court would not be likely to be lenient once more and would instead decide whether to grant the A-G’s request that the offender be imprisoned.

Justice Kyei Baffour stated, “If we return on July 4th and you have not paid the money, I would permit the Republic to move the application, and then we will all know that I had been as fair as possible.

A sale of assets

In his affidavit in opposition to the A-G’s application, Essien testified that his firm, Essien Swiss International Holdings, had agreed to transfer part of its assets to another firm, with the next payment from the buyer allegedly due by the end of June.

Essien claimed that he anticipated receiving roughly $300,000 from that specific payment.

Alfred Tuah-Yeboah, a deputy attorney general, reminded the court that $300,000 is equivalent to approximately GH3.6 million, and that even when combined with the GH5 million previously paid by the convict, it would not be sufficient to cover the GH55 million owing by Essien.

Essien’s attorney, Baffour Gyewu Bonsu Ashia, who also served as Thaddeus Sory’s briefholder, assured the court that his client was also taking additional steps to secure the funds necessary to pay the restitution in addition to selling the assets.

Justice Kyei Baffour ruled that even though he was prepared to let the prosecution move the application and then issue a ruling on it, he chose to grant the applicant a grace period because Essien stated in his deposition that he anticipated receiving some money by June.

The presiding judge stated that it will be known by the following postponed date whether or not Essien’s depositions were genuine, adding that “if indeed the depositions in the affidavits have been made bonafide, time will vindicate that.”


Essien admitted guilt to 16 counts of theft and money laundering on December 13 of last year. As a result, he was found guilty of stealing and misappropriating almost GH90 million in liquidity support that the Bank of Ghana (BoG) had provided to the Capital Bank.

However, the court accepted an arrangement between the defendant and the Attorney-General (A-G) for him (Essien) to pay the GH90 million as restitution to the state, preventing the convict from receiving a custodial sentence.

The arrangement was made in accordance with Section 35 of the Courts Act, 1993 (Act 459), which permits defendants facing trial for causing the state financial loss to pay the money and maybe avoid serving time in prison.

Essien paid GH $30 million of the total and was required by the court to pay the remaining GH $60 million in three installments, with the first installment due on or before April 28, 2023, the second due on or before August 31, 2023, and the final installment due on or before December 15, 2023, in accordance with the agreement.

Essien would be sentenced to prison if he failed to make any payments as required by Section 35(7) of Act 459, Justice Kyei Baffour declared.

The inmate missed the deadline of April 28, which forced the attorney general to submit a request asking the court to imprison him.

On May 11 of this year, Justice Kyei Baffour rejected Essien’s request for permission to renegotiate the terms of the GH60 million reparation to the state and for the court to stay any actions that would put him in jail.

About Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *