Exchanging money without licence: 8 Granted GH¢800,000 bail
Eight persons have been put before an Accra Circuit Court for exchanging money without licence.
The eight are Mohammed Ali, Barikisu Yakubu, Shaibu Suleman Issah, Barry Ali, Bashiru Saadu, Saadu Hamidu, Muhamadu Shamshudeen and Karim Yahaya.
They were charged with operating a forex business without a licence when they appeared before the court presided over by Adelaide Abui Keddy.
They have been admitted to bail in the sum of GH¢100,000 with two sureties each. The court ordered that the sureties be justified with any property valued at GH¢100,000. The accused are expected to re-appear on December 12, 2022.
Police Inspector Isaac Babayi told the court that between November 9 and 10, 2022, a team of police officers and the Bank of Ghana embarked on an exercise to clamp down on illegal forex trade at Tudu, Accra business centre.
The prosecution said the suspects were arrested when investigations revealed that they were engaged in the trade without a licence and added that a search on them revealed thousands of cedis and foreign currencies such as Naira and the United States dollars.
The prosecution said their accomplices managed to flee the scene and that efforts were being made to get them to face the law.
It said GH¢2,300 and USD87 were seized from Mohammed, GH¢10,010 and 6,002 Naira from Barikisu, GH¢3,850 and 65,000 CFA from Shaibu and GH¢848 and USD70 from Barry.
The prosecution said police found GH¢52 and 25 Naira on Bashiru, GH¢360 on Hamidu and GH¢42 on Karim.
A team of lawyers led by Victor Kwadjoga Adawudu in praying for bail said the accused persons were arrested on Thursday, November 10 and arraigned on Monday, November 14, 2022, which breached the constitutional injunction of 48 hours.
The defence counsel said all the accused persons had denied the offence because they had no idea about the business and had not engaged in it.
He said some of them lived and traded around the business area and were caught in the swoop, adding that Barikisu, for instance, was travelling to Lagos, which had its terminal close to the area.
Mr Adawudu said Bashiru, the son of Barikisu, was also caught in the swoop as he was escorting his mother to the bus terminal to go to Lagos.
He said both Hamidu and Shamshudeen, commercial motorbike operators, were also passersby.
Mr Adawudu said there were family and friends to stand sureties, adding they had fixed places of abode within the jurisdiction of the court, and that they were not flight risk.
However, the prosecution disagreed and said they should be kept in police custody to assist police in investigations.
It argued that some were flight risk and that their travelling documents were seized during the arrest.
The prosecution also feared they would interfere with investigations.