General News of Thu, 19 Apr 20180
Kwabenya fugitives: Prosecution presents its last witness
A fourth prosecution witness in the case in which some armed men freed inmates at the Kwabenya Police Station after an attack on the station, killing a Police Officer on duty, on Wednesday testified before an Accra Circuit Court.
Detective Inspector Frank Owusu Afrane in his evidence in chief told the court that he is stationed at the Regional CID, Accra.
He said on January 16, he was in the office when a case of possession of firearms and ammunition without lawful authority at Kwabenya was referred to him at the Regional CID for investigation.
He said again on January 21, another case of attack and jail break at Kwabenya cells was also referred to him for investigation.
He said during investigations, Prince Osei admitted ownership of the gun and six rounds of ammunition in his investigative caution statement and mentioned Prince Acheampong as the one who gave the locally manufactured pistol to him.
The witness said they went ahead and arrested Prince Acheampong, and Edward Lartey who was with him was also arrested to assist in the investigation.
He told the court that during the attack, 14 people were in the cell and seven managed to escape, including Prince Osei, adding that during investigations the police rearrested Prince Osei and three others including Emmanuel Kotey and two others who have been convicted by the court.
Mr Afrane said during the investigation, it also came to light that Nancy Denta sells soft drinks at the Kwabenya police station and has been visiting the cells to sell drinks to inmates.
He said unknown to the counter NCO, Nancy secretly collected mobile phone from one of the escapees (Dickson), who is on the run to charge for him and resent the phone to him later.
“It also came to light that it was the mobile phone that Dickson used to contact his accomplices outside the cells who arranged and went to free them.”
The witness again said that the investigations also revealed that, Prince Osei, Attah Kodjo, and Kofi Dankwa after their escaped went to Price Acheampong and told him they had escaped and wanted money to leave town in order not to be rearrested of which he gave them GHc 240.00.
He told the court that, Attah Kodjo also mentioned to the police that he saw one of the people who came to attack the station killing one Inspector Ashielevi and knows where to find him, so he later took the police to Kasoa Nyanyano and pointed out Kofi Seshie.
Mr Afrane said when Kofi was arrested George Sarbah, Elvis Owusu, George Asante and Theophilus Banda were all in the same house and so were arrested to assist investigations.
The witness later tendered in the caution and charged statements of the accused as well as a locally manufactured pistol and the six live ammunitions.
During cross examination, Counsel for Elvis Owusu and Theophilus Banda, Mr Dela Blagodzi asked whether he just told the court that his clients were picked up by the police to assist in investigations and he answered in the affirmative.
When asked whether after the successful completion investigations they have not found anything against them, he agreed.
The case was later adjourned to April 20, for further cross examination.
The prosecution so far have presented it’s final witness, they called four witnesses including Lance Corporal Robert Owusu, and Lance Corporal Samira Mohammed, Lance Corporal Richard Amoakohene and Detective Inspector Frank Owusu Afrane.
At the previous sitting the third prosecution witness gave his evidence in chief, was cross examined and later discharged.
The facts of the case as presented by Prosecution led by Superintendent of Police, Kweku Bempah were that, the complainants are Policemen stationed at Kwabenya District Police station.
Prince Osei, 25, is a scrap dealer living at Glefe Dansoman; Atta Kwadwo, 20, is a driver; and Kofi Darko, 25 also a trader living at Glefe, Dansoman.
Nancy is 28 and lives at Dome; and George Yeboah is 30 and lives around the Graphic Road.
Prince Kofi Acheampong is 32 and lives at Afienya; Edward Lartey is 20 and lives at Tema Newtown; Kofi Seshie is 28, George Sarbah is 23, Elvis is 31, George Asante is 33, and Theophilus is 25.
Mr Bempah said on January 21, at about 0130 hours, a gang of armed men numbering six attacked the Kwabenya Police station and freed their colleagues who were being held in detention for various violent crimes.
He told the court that in execution of their plan, the assailants proceeded to the station whilst two of them who pretended to have a complaint to lodge, entered the charge office and told the counter Non-Commission Officer (NCO) that someone borrowed money from them and had refused to pay back.
The counter NCO No. 43225 G/Cpl. Robert Owusu advised them to seek a redress at the civil court since the case they were reporting was civil matter, the two then signalled the rest, who had laid ambush within the premises, and launched an attack on the Policemen at the charge office.
The prosecution said they shot Inspector Emmanuel Ashilevi, who was on duty as a Monitoring Officer on the right buttocks, held the counter NCO, his counter orderly, the charge office guard, and the night investigator hostages.
He said they took the keys to the cells and released seven of the inmates, namely, Chibuzor Akwuba, Emmanuel Kotey, Rockson Edem Dzigbede, Dickson Ofori, Prince Osei, Attah Kwadwo, and Kofi Darko.
After the armed attack, the assailants fled the scene, the NCO and the night Investigator arranged for an ambulance and rushed Inspector Ashilevi to the Police Hospital for treatment, but they were referred to the 37 Military Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
Mr Bempah told the court that, Police intelligence, led to the arrest of George Yeboah, who assisted Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo with GH¢ 200.00 to escape out of the jurisdiction.
He also gave GH¢ 40.00 to Kofi Darko to enable him escape from the jurisdiction.
He said on January 23, Police intelligence led to the arrest of Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo at Worawora in the Volta Region.
Investigations also revealed that whiles in detention, on January 18, Prince Osei overheard the other inmates planning to escape.
According to the Police, in the evening on the same day, Nancy brought a mobile phone to Dickson in the cells, which he used to contact his people outside to execute the escape plan.
Rockson’s brother also brought a hacksaw blade to him by hiding it in bread to cut the padlocks to the cells but he could not do so.
He said upon interrogation, Prince Osei, said he stole a gun from Prince Kofi Acheampong.
He also revealed that Dickson and Chibuzor are Acheampong’s boys whom he normally sends out on robbery trips.
Mr Bempah said further investigations also revealed that it was Acheampong in collaboration with Dickson and Chibuzor who sent the armed men to attack and release them from the cells, which led to the death of the Inspector.
On January 25, at about 0200 hours, Acheampong was arrested together with Edward from their hideout at Afienya.
The prosecution said on January 27 at about 0230 hours, Attah led the Police to a house at Kasoa Nyanyano and pointed Kofi Seshie to the Police as one of the gang members who came to rescue them from the cells and also shot and killed the Inspector.
He said the rest are all suspected accomplices arrested to assist in police investigations.