The Police Intelligence Department, acting on a tip-off on Christmas Day, intercepted two vehicles loaded with a total of 219 bags of cocoa beans at Fume and Ve-Golokwati in the Volta Region, heading for Togo.
The KIA truck, GS 3107-13, and Benz bus, GR 6999-K, were transporting the items delivered to them on the Spintex Road in Accra by other vehicles from Nkawkaw in the Eastern Region.
The police team caught up with them in the two towns along the Kpeve-Hohoe road.
Briefing the Daily Graphic after the operation, Director, Special Services, COCOBOD; Charles Amenyaglo, said the drivers and their mates were arrested and initially placed in the custody of the newly-created Volta North Regional Police Command in Hohoe.
He disclosed the names of the suspects as Kwame Delali, Senyo Aniawu, Ali Fataw, and Adi Tahiru.
Mr Amenyaglo said some of the cocoa beans were covered with flour bags to avoid detection by the personnel of the security agencies.
Concealed in bags
“The cocoa beans in the Benz bus were in jute bags covered by other sacks, with some packed on top of the vehicle concealed in straw bags,” he added.
Mr Amenyaglo said the suspects, who were later granted police enquiry bail, would soon be arraigned before court for purchasing cocoa without lawful authority, and attempted smuggling of cocoa.
He said the cocoa beans were not thoroughly dry and it was also an offence to buy and convey such a commodity.
Mr Amenyaglo expressed gratitude to the Police Intelligence Department for acting swiftly on the tip-off to arrest the suspects.
Meanwhile, the two vehicles have been impounded by the police while the bags of cocoa beans have been handed over to COCOBOD.