General News of Tue, 20 Dec 20167

Mahama gun man to be released by Xmas – Lawyer Sosu

Renowned Human Rights lawyer, Francis Xavier Sosu, is expected to file a formal petition to the Attorney General’s Department for the release of Charles Antwi, a 36-year-old man who was accused of planning to assassinate President John Dramani Mahama.

An Accra Human Rights Court had earlier in a certiorari order quashed a 10-year jail term handed him by a Circuit Court with an order for him to be taken to the Psychiatric Hospital for mental treatment after it emerged that he was mentally unstable.

But the accused person has since been passed fit, yet he is still in the cells of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) for months without any legal basis.

In an exclusive interview with Kasapa Fm’s Daakyehene Ofosu Agyeman, lawyer Sosu, who is the counsel for the accused person, hinted of a move through a petition to have his client released so he could celebrate the Christmas with his family.

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No legal justification

Lawyer Sosu explained further that, “the state is holding him (Antwi) illegally and at the end of the day, the state can incur some debts because so long as you are holding him without lawful justification, you are infringing on his right to freedom of movement and beyond that freedom of movement, we know that when you go to the cells the conditions there violate human dignity so if there is no grounds for holding him, then they have to release him.

“We are calling on the BNI and the Attorney General’s department to expedite action so that they can release him to join his family to celebrate Christmas.” He added.

Freed

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Mr. Antwi was freed by the Accra High Court following an appeal filed by the Attorney-General and Mr Sosu at the Human Rights Court to argue against the decision by a Circuit Court on July 28, 2015.

The lawyer contended that the convict was of no sound mind and lacked the capacity to stand trial, adding that the Circuit Court’s decision was so perverse and ought not to be allowed to stand.

Background

In July last year, the Accra Circuit Court presided over by Justice Francis Obiri, sentenced Antwi to 10 years’ imprisonment for possession of firearms without lawful excuse, contrary to Section 11 of NRCD 9 (1972).

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According to Mr. Antwi, the only thing he could do to end the suffering of Ghanaians was to kill the President, just like the former President Jerry John Rawlings did in the late 1970s, because he (Mahama) had mismanaged the country.

“I wanted to kill Mahama and become a President because J. J. killed to become a president.”

Police’s brief facts

According to the prosecutors in charge, Superintendent of Police Francis Baah and Deputy Superintendent of Police Abraham Annor, the accused person in the case is a Ghanaian and hails from Dadiesoabaa in the Brong Ahafo Region.

On Sunday, 26th of July, 2015, the accused person was found on the premises of Ringway Gospel Centre Assemblies of God Church at Osu fidgeting while seated.

A witness in the case, who was also in the church, spotted the accused and when a search was conducted on him, a locally made pistol and two rounds of ammunition were found on him.

The accused was subsequently arrested to assist in investigation.

In the course of investigation, he admitted ownership of the gun and said that he bought it from a national of Burkina Faso at Nkoranza in the Brong Ahafo Region.

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