OBSERVER: Fraud-accused Customs broker Jairo Ephraim turned up to court yesterday with a cheque in hand and prepared to own up to his actions.
The Jennings man admitted before Justice Ann-Marie Smith that he had defrauded a man who trusted him to clear his vehicle through Customs.
The victim imported a car from Japan which arrived in July 2020 and procured the services of the defendant.
The complainant gave Ephraim EC$5,500 to carry out the process and, at one point in September, he also reportedly handed over to Ephraim the documents needed to clear the vehicle from the Deep Water Harbour.
After some time had passed, several calls from the complainant to the accused went unanswered.
It was after those failed attempts that the victim reported the matter to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID).
The defendant, who is in his late 30s, was taken into custody in October that year and allegedly admitted to having received the money.
It was for those reasons that he was charged with fraudulent conversion but he initially told the court that he was not guilty.
Ephraim was therefore scheduled to stand trial but he changed his mind and admitted guilt yesterday.
He even presented a cheque for EC$5,500 to the court which was handed to the complainant so that he could attempt to cash it and report back to the court.
Ephraim, however, could face additional penalties when he is sentenced on September 30.