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Bullion van robbery: Court threatens to strike out case

BY: Elizabeth Konadu-Boakye
Bullion van robbery: Court threatens to strike out case
Bullion van robbery: Court threatens to strike out case

An Accra Circuit court hearing the case involving six policemen accused of involvement in bullion van in Accra has threatened to strike out the case if the prosecution fails to file its witness statements in compliance with the law.

When the case was called last Wednesday, the substantive prosecutor, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Sylvester Asare, was absent because he was bereaved, with Detective Inspector Isaac Baabayi holding brief for him.

The presiding judge, Patricia Amponsah, said the prosecution had failed to file its witness statement since March this year despite repeated directions from the court.

Accordingly, the judge said she would not hesitate to strike out the case at the next adjourned date if the prosecution failed to file the witness statements and serve the persons.

She directed that a copy of the order that the case would be struck out must be submitted to Attorney General's office before the next adjourned date on August 8, this year.

Delay

Lawyers for the accused persons - Justin Terriwajjah, David Bondorin, Jango Nuhu, Devine Dotse Tettey, Andrews Kudzo Vortia and Emmanuel Larbi - all took turns to pray for bail for their clients.

They argued that the constant delay by prosecution meant their clients were being kept in custody as a form of punishment even before trial begins.

They accused the prosecution of not having any concrete evidence against the accused persons, hence the constant delay in filing the documents.

Again, they accused the prosecution of not promoting justice with their constant delay and inability or refusal to file the witness statements for the trial to commence.

" Their job is to do justice and serve justice with the court, but they have shown no regard for justice. It's been five months and absolutely nothing has been done", Counsel for the first accused, Mr Tettey said.

Ms Amponsah, however, denied the accused persons bail due to the severity of the alleged offence, adding that she was not satisfied and not convinced with their bail applications.

Robberies

The facts as narrated by DSP Asare were that last year, the Ghana Police Service (GPS) recorded as a series of street robberies, as well as attacks on bullion vans.

The police service, he said, mounted surveillance on the suspected robbers undertaking the unlawful activities within the capital.

On February 22, this year, the prosecutor said the police received a report of an attack on the bullion van at North Kaneshie in Accra.

He said subsequently, the police launched investigations into the alleged robbery, which led to the arrest of Constable  Reindolph Gyimah Ansah alias Pablo (deceased), who admitted the offence during interrogation.

DSP Asare added that further enquiries led to the arrest of Lance Corporal Stephen Nyame (also deceased) and the accused persons; Constable Affisu, Yaro Ibrahim, Constable Richard Boadu, Constable Rabiu Jambedu and Constable Albert Ofosu.

Investigations

 According to the prosecutor, during investigations, the late L/pl. Nyame and Constable Ansah admitted taking part in the robberies and mentioned two Nigerians, including Omor Naija as accomplices, who were currently on the run, and that some of the weapons used in the robberies were with Nigerian accomplices around Ashaiman.

He added that on March 6, 2022, L/pl. Nyame and Constable Ansah led the police to Ashaiman to apprehend the two Nigerian suspects, which led to the death of L/pl. Nyame and Constable Ansah who sustained gunshot wounds during the operation.

The case has been in court since it was first on March 8, this year.