So many people are yet to know how serious a crime this SIM-Box Fraud is!
Former boss of the Ghana Real Estates Developers Association(GREDA), Dr Alexander Tweneboah who was charged with SIM-box fraud has been sentenced to two years in prison with a fine of ¢24000 attached.
According to the Fast Track High Court presided over by Justice Efua Serwa Botwe, the sentences shall run concurrently. The sentence also states that, failure to pay the ¢24000 penalty would amount to an additional two to four months in prison.
Dr Tweneboah was charged for providing electronic communication service without license as well as possession of illegal device. He was also charged for obstruction and interference of transmission, delivery and reception of communication. He was found guilty of all the two-count charges.
Dr Tweneboah pleaded not guilty to the SIM-box fraud charge, but delivering her judgement, Wednesday, Justice Botwe said considering his standing in society he should have known better than to engage in such a crime. Meanwhile, she indicated that the jail term is a lenient one considering the fact that Dr Tweneboah had operated the SIM box fraud for barely six months.
Dr Tweneboah, together with five others were arrested by a joint task force which included the National Communications Authority (NCA), and the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) on January 15, 2015.
According to the prosecutor, he was arrested at his residence at Baatsona, Manet area, where several items, including one SIM Box with 64-slot SIM server, 4G Internet Modem, a laptop computer and a mini antenna were retrieved. He also stated that Dr. Tweneboah claimed ownership of the equipment and also owned up to using them to terminate international calls illegally.
A SIM-Box Fraud is a setup in which fraudsters install SIM boxes with multiple low-cost prepaid SIM cards. The fraudster then can terminate international calls through local phone numbers in the respective country to make it appear as if the call is a local call.
Telecom companies, as well as the government lose billions to SIM-box fraud every year as a large part of the revenue that would have gone to the companies and the government are lost to the fraudsters.