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General News Mon, 12 Jul 2010

Sima cries foul over visa and master cards

Accra, July 12, GNA - Ibrahim Sima, Chief Executive Officer of Exopa Modelling Agency on trial

for drug related offences, on Monday raised a red flag over his master and visa cards being used by

some people. He said his wallet, which contained the two cards taken away from him by Mr Anthony Smith, a

Narcotic Control Board (NACOB) official were being used in Ghana. Sima said his ex-wife told him and that had been confirmed by the German Embassy in Ghana. "My Lord this is not fair," he remarked. He disclosed this when ending his cross-examination before the Fast Track High Court presided

over by Mr Justice Charles Quist. When the prosecutor, Principal State Attorney George Kwadwo Ofori provided the court with an

inventory of items taken from him, the two cards were not included. He therefore told the court that he was going to obtain an extract to verify from the NACOB

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officials. The court after glancing through the inventory ordered the Police to investigate Sima's

allegations to establish whether or not the cards collected by Mr Smith were being used. The Police are to furnish the court with their findings on the next adjourned date August 12. However, Sima insisted that the investigations should be conducted by a different investigator. He has been charged with attempting to export narcotic drugs and possessing narcotic

drugs without authority. Sima had denied the charges and he is on remand. Meanwhile, Sima's defence Counsel Mr James Agalga has indicated to the court to call

one or two experts to testify in the case. Answering questions under cross-examination earlier, Sima admitted that he packed his

belongings into the bag himself. He said his bag contained his clothes, shoes and yams. Sima said he traveled with the yams because that was his favourite food and as models

they needed to eat foods that did not contain fats. He admitted that on September 16 2009, he was accompanied by NACOB officials to

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Graphic road to identify the one who sold the tubers of yam to him. Sima disclosed that he alone knew the number to unlock his bag. However, he denied that he opened the bag in the presence of NACOB officials adding "I

will not spoil the bag which I used my own money to buy". When the prosecution put it to him that he (Sima) had told the Police that it was one

Salifu, who gave him the drugs, Sima told the court that he never said that adding he only read

that in the newspapers. He admitted that NACOB officials did not lay hands on him but intimated that they did

threaten him if he failed to talk. When asked whether he knew the weight of substance found on him, he said it was "four

something, something grammes." Sima however, admitted signing his name against the substances which had been filed,

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tested and placed in a box by NACOB officials. He failed to tell the court why officials of NACOB would frame him up, and denied

knowing the street value of the drugs. Sima raised questions over the mode of arrest by the NACOB officials alleging that one

Shadarack Bosumtwi an official of NACOB knew what happened to his bag in question. According to him, the NACOB officials demanded 10,000 dollars from him to settle the

drug case against him. When prosecution put it to him that his bag did not have the inscriptions of CEPS and

NACOB that was why it was abandoned, Sima said he could not tell the reason why his bag was

abandoned. He denied the charges preferred against him saying he was innocent.

Prosecution's case was that the accused allegedly concealed five kilogramme's of drugs

suspected to be cocaine in some tubers of yam while traveling to Frankfurt, Germany, on

September 7, last year. While going through departure formalities, officials of NACOB opened his luggage and found

the tubers of yam sliced and joined. When the yams were sliced, the drugs were found concealed in them. The prosecution said Sima claimed ownership of the drug claiming he was asked to give it to

someone in Germany for a fee of 3,200 dollars.

Source: GNA