Five policemen, who pretended to arrest a businessman but ended up allegedly robbing him at gun point, have been remanded by a circuit court in Accra.
The accused, namely Wishwell Odoo, Lawal Agyapong, Evans Arawassi and Sena Kuvordo, who are all with the rank of General Constable, as well as Redeemer Agama, a General Lance Corporal, all of National RDF attached to National Operations Combat 23 Team in Accra, pleaded not guilty yesterday.
The policemen have been charged with three counts of conspiracy to commit a crime namely robbery contrary to Sections 23 (1) and 149 of Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29), robbery contrary to Section 149 of Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29) and conspiracy to commit crime to wit ‘giving bribe to influence public officer’ contrary to Sections 23 (1) and 252 (1) of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29).
In the particulars of offence, the policemen have been accused of robbing a businessman called Jeffrey Mackeon Yeboah of his GH¢20,000 on Monday, May, 24, and when a probe was instituted into the matter, they again attempted to bribe the investigator of the case, Detective Lance Corporal Confidence Fiagadzi with GH¢2,500 to influence the case.
When the case was called, at the Circuit Court 2, the accused persons who had a team of four lawyers led by Andy Vortia, requested for bail, but the prosecutor, ASP Evans Kesse, objected to the bail application.
He told the court that the police are now investigating the matter and would need some time to do a thorough work.
The court, presided over by Her Honour Rosemary Baah, dismissed the bail application and remanded the policemen into police custody until June 9.
Presenting the facts, ASP Kesse told the court that Mr. Mackeon Yeboah who is a student and a businessman and lives at Ashalley Botwe, Accra, filed the complaint against the policemen.
“On May 24, 2021, at about 2am, the complainant was on board an Uber taxi around UPSA area when accused persons who were on board Operation Calm Life Police Service vehicle with arms meant for night patrol duties, accosted him and forcibly accused the victim of being involved in scamming,” ASP Kesse told the court.
The prosecutor said the errant policemen threatened the victim with harm and asked him to hand over to them every penny he had on him.
“They seized the victim’s phone when he was in the police vehicle with them as they drove with him from Madina to Awudome Cemetery at Kaneshie at night. They threatened to harm the victim should he fail to hand over to them cash of GH¢20,000,” he added.
According to the prosecution, the policemen again threatened the victim with harm at gunpoint and asked him to transfer cash from his bank account through online banking system into a mobile money account.
“The accused persons continued to hold the victim hostage in the police patrol to Kwame Nkrumah Circle where they met another accomplice of theirs who was in a civilian dress,” the prosecution submitted, adding “their accomplice joined them in the police patrol vehicle and they ordered the victim to transfer cash of GH¢20,000 from his bank account into mobile money account number 0558756449.”
“The victim acting upon the instructions of the accused persons amidst threat of harm transferred a cash sum of GH¢20,000 from his Ecobank account,” the prosecution said.
“Having robbed the victim of his money, the accused persons deleted the transaction records on his phone, sent him to the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange and called on a taxi driver where they forced him into it and asked the driver to drive on without looking back,” the prosecution added.
The prosecution said a report was made to the police at Kaneshie District and police investigation led to the arrest of the five serving police officers and cash exhibit of the GH¢20,000 retrieved from them.
After the arrest of accused persons, they bribed the investigator with GH¢2,500 to cover them up in the case.
The prosecution said an itemized bill has been sent to Abeka District Court for disclosures and efforts are being made to arrest their civilian accomplice whose mobile money account was used in the facilitation of the crime.
By Linda Tenyah-Ayettey