The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

W/Africa Enterprises Fmr. Branch Manager Arrested For Thievery, Others

 By Grace Q. Bryant

The Liberia National Police has forwarded the former Branch Manager of West Africa Enterprises Incorporated, branches 15 and 18, in Redlight, Paynesville, Philip G. Nyantte, for allegedly stealing US$123,373 from said entity.

Defendant Nyantte, 35, was charged with the crimes of Criminal Attempt to Commit Murder, in violation of Chapter 10 Section 10.1; Aggravated Assault, in violation of Chapter 14 Subchapter B Section 14.20; Theft of Property, in violation of Chapter 15 subchapter D Section 15.51, and Misapplication of Entrusted Property, in violation of Chapter 15 subchapter D Section 15.56 of the Revised Penal Code of the Republic of Liberia.

Between October 2021 and January 2022, the company supplied the defendant, who was then managing its two branches located in Red Light and Gbobachop, with goods in stock totaling US$146,000 and US$83,453.25 respectively

According to complainant, Human Resource Manager of the company, Harris M. Kokeh, said that company policy is that after every three days of sale, each branch should report or send its sales to the head office, but the defendant was not complying with the company policy, as per his financial report/s, and many times he was called via mobile phone by the company, but he gave lots of excuses.

The complainant narrated that every time the company’s Operation Manager, Huisen Siour, went to the two branches, the defendant was nowhere near there, adding that he went on one occasion with the Operation Manager on one of his usual tours of the branches, and when they got to Red Light Branch #15, one of the branches operated by the defendant, they met a guy to be identified as his brother.

The defendant furthered that in the presence of the cold room staff, including the defendant’s brother and cashier, Tesa Jacob, they carried on an inventory and therefore realized that, out of the US$146,000 worth of goods supplied to that branch, US$49,919 was missing or unaccounted for.

They later asked those guys to go with them to Gobachop Branch #11, where they also took inventory, and they observed that out of US$183,453.25 worth of goods supplied to that branch, US$73,453 was also missing or unaccounted for.

The victim, Kokeh, also explained that since then, the defendant was nowhere to be found, but sometime in March 2022, they were informed that he was spotted in Nimba County around the border, and the company personnel, along with some police officers, went in search of him for about two weeks, but to no avail.

The victim narrated that on Saturday, October 28, while leaving the IB Bank on 11th Street, Sinkor, he saw the defendant sitting in a park, and when he confronted him, the defendant told him that he didn’t have any money for the company, and that he should do anything he wants to do; while he was about to call the Police, the defendant drove the vehicle and hit him to the ground and left the scene.

The victim noted that while on the ground, he asked some motorcyclists to help him chase after the vehicle, and that’s how the Police came on the scene and arrested him.

The victim sustained injuries and his Camon 18 Premier phone, valued US$275, got damaged.

During Police investigation conducted with the complainant and defendant, it was established that the crimes of Criminal Attempt to Commit Murder, Aggravated Assault, Theft of Property, and Misapplication of Entrusted Property, did occur.

During the course of the investigation, the defendant denied his involvement in the commission of the crimes and professed that the Management, without his knowledge and consent, accessed his office in his absence and took delivery of all his financial reports, including cash, as well as goods in stock.

The investigation established that defendant converted the goods given to him for sale to his personal interest, and abandoned both branches 15 and 18 for reasons best known to himself.

Additionally, defendant Nyantte declared that victim Kokeh attempted opening his vehicle door while he was about to drive out, which resulted in his injuries, something he had no idea of; but the investigation also established that defendant Nyantte, having seen the victim as Human Resource Manager of West Africa Enterprises Inc., and knowing fully well his criminal acts, deliberately hit the victim with his vehicle and fled the scene to avoid being arrested.

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