Koboko Accountant Jailed for Forgery, Embezzlement

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In short
The Sub-County accountant of Ludara Sub-County in Koboko district has been handed a one-year jail sentence for forgery and stealing government funds.

The Sub-County accountant of Ludara Sub-County in Koboko district has been handed a one-year jail sentence for embezzlement of government funds.

The grade one magistrate’s court in Koboko on Wednesday found Paul Awusa guilty of embezzling one million shillings that was meant for local government service delivery in the Sub-County.  Court sent him to Gbukutu government prison where he will spend a year.

Appearing before Joan Achiro, the grade one magistrate, prosecution proved beyond reasonable doubt that Awusa participated in committing the offense in June this year. Court earlier heard that Awusa forged the signature of the Sub-County Chief to go and withdraw the money from Stanbic bank Koboko branch on June 6, 2012.

But as information of the missing funds leaked, the matter was taken up by auditors and other Sub-County authorities hence pinning Awusa as the prime suspect in the loss of the money.

Awusa was then arrested on July 24, 2012 by police detectives who brought him to Koboko police station from where he was released on police bond.

Court was also informed that after releasing the suspect on bond, he hurriedly rushed and deposited to the same bank account the one million shillings. This, according to prosecution, was enough evidence that the suspect was guilty of his action. It was noted that as a result, the suspect was re-arrested on July 26 and later remanded to Gbukutu prison.

Awusa, however denied having embezzled any money from the Sub-County account.

But prosecution told court that the evidences adduced were substantial enough to pin the suspect as records from the bank produced before court showed that Awusa participated in withdrawing and re-depositing the same amount in question.

Court also heard that a forged cheque showed that Awusa forged the signature of the Sub-County chief to withdraw money from the bank.

This left Achiro with no option but to jail Awusa. According to Achiro, the sentence will act as a lesson to deter other public officers from committing the same crime. She says if he is not satisfied with her ruling he has 14 days to appeal the ruling in a high court.