It has emerged that a German national Olaf Grabowski, who also doubles as founder and Chief Executive Officer of German Drilling Group has been tricked by a Lebanese businessman Abdul Ahmid Hadj Fawaz, aided by the police too.
Olaf was last week whisked to the Criminal Investigation Department on allegations of ‘conspiracy to defraud’ as complained by Abdul Fawaz- owner Fawaz Building Materials.
Findings are that Olaf has come to Sierra Leone in 2011 and was into oil business, but caught up with Abdul Fawaz who had snatched him (Olaf) from a Sierra Leonean businessman (name withheld), to have him serve as a business partner and as his (Abdul Fawaz) personal adviser on every aspects of business.
Olaf later set up a company- German Drilling Company- and was having Abdul Fawaz and a Frenchman Achibald Arcaute as shareholders owning 32.5% each, and him (Olaf) 35%, as owner.
Police sources say Abdul Fawaz lately fell out with Olaf and as a result complained him of conspiracy to defraud, and then have him arrested and detained in smelly police cells for days.
Olaf who initially was accused of conspiracy to defraud had his accusation changed to embezzlement of company’s money (nine hundred and eight thousand United States dollars.)
But at the intervention of the German Ambassador, Wolfgang Wiethoff , the allegation of nine hundred and eight thousand United States dollars surprisingly reduced to four hundred and sixty five thousand, showing and interpreting police’s utter investigative inconsistencies.
Unconfirmed reports are that Abdul Fawaz looks like using his unregulated police influence to intimidate Olaf, possibly also eliminating him from his German Drilling Group and as the company’s CEO.
It is a fact that the intervention of the German Ambassador destabilizes plans of the police to intimidate and scare the German national from being a part of his German Drilling Group.
Sources say the Police have ordered Olaf to have his official vehicle and other vehicles of the German Drilling Company parked in the company’s compound until investigation is completed.
Confirmations have it that the official vehicle of Olaf (Mercedes Benz ML 320) has been taken from him by the police, but those used by persons loyal to Abdul Fawaz have been left untouched.
It has reached desks of the New Age Newspaper that an expert recruited by Abdul Fawaz has been sent with a company vehicle to the mining site of Vimetco in the Gondama region to take over exploration drilling activities of the German Drilling Group as contracted by Vimetco SMHL, the country’s largest bauxite mine.
It could be recalled that Sierra Leone and the Federal Republic of Germany signed in 1964 a bilateral treaty for the protection of bilateral investment.
Such protects investments of foreign nationals against all forms of states intervention including unlawful actions by the police in relation to seizure of assets.
The advantage of such a treaty is that investors can file claims in Washington before the international court.
Although the German Ambassador refused making any comment on the arrest and detention of his country man Olaf, people’s thinking is that if the issue isn’t addressed with the highest care, it is obvious such will bring friction between Sierra Leone and Germany in the near future.
It is a fact Fawaz is one of Lebanese businessmen that have received immeasurable contracts from government, making millions of profits.
One of such is recent contract given him for the construction of a contemporary cultural center at Aberdeen, and in turn freely makes use of the rest of a verse land found lying and situated at Aberdeen.
Olaf, we are told, is a lawyer called to the bar in his home country Germany in 1988, some twenty eight years ago.
Our findings are that the police have no business investigating any issue linking misunderstanding from among shareholders of a company, but leave same with the Commercial Fast Track Court to do.
This, we know, is an entrenched clause in the companies’s act of 2009 and the company’s memorandum of association.
The police, we are told, conducted search warrant at the premises of Olaf at Goderich and took away with them technical description of drilling machines, flyers, printed company’s letter heads, and seven boxes of wine; completely unrelated to the matter they now investigate.
It is alleged also that whilst Olaf was detained by the police, he was denied access to food, toilet and medicines.
Abdul Fawaz who was contacted by this press said: “Olaf is a thief, and that we should go ahead and write whatever we feel.”
We intend also publish a story on the construction of new port at the Queen Elizabeth Quay II , which according to findings, has seen an Israeli national, a Lebanese and Sierra Leonean businessmen rip off up to 5% commission of the USD 750M investment.