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Mobile currency exchange vendor outsmarts robbers, but gets shot in the leg

BY: Emelia Ennin Abbey

A mobile currency exchange vendor who outwitted two suspected robbers by giving them a bag stuffed with rags instead of one with $60,000 received gunshots in his leg and the back of his head in the precincts of the Fiesta Royale Hotel at Dzorwulu in Accra last Friday.

The victim (name withheld) was taken to the Police Hospital in Accra by some Good Samaritans.

The Accra Regional Police Command has mounted a search for the suspected robbers who bolted on a motorbike after shooting the victim.

What happened

Briefing the Daily Graphic, the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Accra Regional Police Command, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mrs Effia Tenge, said the victim told the police that he received a call on Thursday, April 11, 2019 from an unknown caller who requested $60,000 in exchange for Ghana cedis.

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The victim, who claimed he was suspicious of the caller because he knew all his clients and also because the amount involved was huge, said he ignored the call.

The victim’s decision to ignore the caller was also because the caller refused to disclose where he got his (victim’s) contact from.

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The same caller followed up with another call the next day requesting the same amount of money.

Mrs Tenge said the victim then asked the caller to meet him at the Airport Police Station or any other police station, to which the caller agreed that they meet at the Airport Police Station.

She said the victim got to the Airport Police Station at the agreed time and after a while when the caller was not showing up, he called the number that had called him to request the money.

The person who responded at the other end is said to have told the victim that he was lodging at the Fiesta Royale Hotel and that the money was too bulky to be carried around.

Shooting

He, therefore, asked the victim to meet him instead at the Fiesta Royale Hotel since it was closer to his bank, where he would withdraw the cedi equivalent.

When Ansah arrived at the Fiesta Royale Hotel and called the unknown number, the recipient asked the victim to give a brief description of himself, including the colour of shirt he was wearing, to which the victim obliged.

The victim said a man approached him and identified himself as the one who had been calling him and suddenly pulled a gun and ordered the victim to hand over the bag he was carrying at his back.

When Ansah refused, the suspected robber fired gunshots indiscriminately into the air.

The victim, who told the police he was gripped with fear, said he attempted to run into the reception area of the hotel but was shot by the suspected robber.

After shooting Ansah, the suspected robber snatched the bag he thought was full of money and jumped onto a waiting motorbike which sped off.

Some police officers on duty at a traffic intersection close to the Fiesta Royale Hotel who heard the gunshot joined some persons close to the scene and arranged for the victim to be taken to the Police Hospital while they put distress calls through to the police control room.

Mrs Tenge said the victim, who was admitted to the Police Hospital, had since been discharged.