Kissi Agyebeng

The Director of the Strategy, Research, and Communication Division at the Office of the Special Prosecutor, has refuted assertions made by the Attorney General that the office failed to provide details of the corruption investigation conducted with the FBI in the Cecilia Dapaah case.

According to Sammy Appiah Darko, contrary to the Attorney General’s claims, the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) did not request for the FBI’s corruption investigations report.

“At no point in time did EOCO request for a copy of the FBI report. You notice that in that paragraph that talks about the investigative report, EOCO never said that they requested for a report. They rather said that they had not seen the FBI report. So we want to make it very clear,” Mr Darko said.

He told host of Newsfile, Samson Lardy Anyenini, that had the request been made, the OSP would have had to seek clearance before dissemination.

“Even if EOCO requested for it, this FBI report has a lot of confidentiality clauses on it that were directed particularly to the Special Prosecutor and you can’t just give an FBI report to another agency because you have the case transferred there.”

“There ought to be a lot of inter-agency collaboration and clearance. So if that happened, then, we may have triggered clearance so that either we are cleared by the FBI or FBI will directly send it to them,” Mr Darko said.

This comes after the Attorney General and Minister of Justice advised EOCO against initiating money laundering investigations into the dealings of former Sanitation Minister, Cecilia Dapaah.

According to the Attorney General’s office, the docket presented to EOCO only contained the OSP’s letter transmitting the docket, the diary of action, statements taken during the investigation, and letters written by the OSP to other institutions like the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) and banks for inquiries.

The AG’s office also stated in their letter that the OSP did not provide a copy of their investigation report with the FBI to EOCO despite writing to the office.

Further analysis of the docket by the Attorney General’s office revealed that the OSP did not find any evidence of corruption or corruption-related offences against Cecilia Dapaah.

The Attorney General’s office emphasised that the key to pursuing money laundering investigations is the capacity to prove that financial gains were obtained from criminal proceeds arising from unlawful activity.

“In the absence of the identification of any criminality associated with the properties retrieved from the suspects, the OSP’s referral to EOCO for investigations to be conducted into money laundering is without basis,” the AG had explained.

However, Mr. Darko insists that if their referral for a money laundering investigation was baseless, the Attorney General would not have directed the police to investigate the source of Cecilia Dapaah’s wealth.

“We have given EOCO platinum information. Ordinarily, you will not even find other agencies giving such information to EOCO,” he said.

Mr. Darko added that the OSP was not conducting money laundering investigations but looking at corruption and its related offences.

As such, “we are of the opinion that we had all that it takes to send that referral to EOCO…there is no way we could have proceeded and then investigated and then write a report on money laundering for EOCO, then EOCO will send it to AG,” he said.

“We were not under any obligation to have conducted a money laundering investigative report and given it to EOCO, then what would EOCO do?”.