Crime & Punishment of Tue, 22 Dec 20090

Harvester convicted for stealing harvesting knife

Asamankese, Dec. 22, GNA - The Asamankese Circuit Court on Tuesday convicted a labourer, Kwaku Agyei, 24, for stealing an oil palm harvestin= g knife with its pole. Agyei, who pleaded guilty with explanation was however, remanded in prison custody until January 6, 2010 when his accomplice, Stephen Kwame Appiah, jointly charged with him, will be brought before the court on ben= ch warrant. Appiah is facing a charge of dishonestly receiving the harvesting kn= ife and its pole valued at GH¢ 150 from Agyei.

Prosecuting, Police Inspector Francis Asare-Cobbina said both the complainant and the accused persons lived at Kwae Estate of the Ghana Oil=

Palm Development Company where they worked as harvesters of oil palm frui= t. He said about six months ago, two witnesses in the case went to the complainant's house and collected his harvesting knife to harvest oil pal= m fruit.

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The prosecutor said after working for some time on their farm, they left the knife to go to a nearby stream to fetch drinking water. He said Agyei, who had been hiding in the area took advantage of the=

absence of the two harvesters and sneaked in to steal the harvesting knif= e with its pole. When the two returned from the stream to their utter surprise, they found that the harvesting knife had vanished. The prosecutor said after careful search for it without success, the= y suspected Agyei to be the thief since they had earlier on seen him in the=

area. They therefore confronted Agyei on their return home but he denied knowledge of it. On December 16, a report was made to the police and the accused was arrested. During interrogation by the police, he admitted that he stole the kn= ife and gave it to Appiah at Otumi. When Appiah was invited to the Asuom Police station, he readily produced the harvesting knife with its pole, which he said was sold to hi= m by Agyei for GH¢ 25.00. The prosecutor said Appiah was granted police enquiry bail and was t= o appear in court but had intentionally refused to do so. Agyei told the court that he did not sell the knife but pledged it t= o Appiah and collected money to enable him to care for an ailing child.

Source: GNA

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