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General News Mon, 19 Nov 2001

Police, CEPS officials clash over contraband goods

There was a controversy on Thursday between three Officials of Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) and two policemen at the CEPS barracks at Aflao over alleged contraband goods seized by the police from smugglers.

The confrontation was over which of the two institutions, has the authority to handle smugglers who have been arrested with goods.

When the Ghana News Agency (GNA) got to the scene, there was an exchange of words with each side claiming to have authority to handle smugglers.

The suspected carriers were released by the CEPS personnel who said the police should have first handed them over to the CEPS and not go into any negotiation with them for the release of the goods

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Mr Amissah-Koomson, Assistant Commissioner of CEPS in-charge of Aflao, told the GNA that though the law empowers the police to arrest smugglers the same law was explicit that they should be handed over to the CEPS for prosecution.

Mr Ransford Ninson, District Superintendent of Police in charge of Aflao on his part, said that every law including the arrest and handling of smugglers comes directly under the police.

He said, however, that about four years ago, the government issued a directive that smugglers arrested by the police should be handed over to the CEPS.

Source: GNA
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