Crime & Punishment of Tue, 29 May 20182
Kwabenya jailbreakers open defence
The remaining four accused persons who are standing trial for allegedly attacking the Kwabenya police station and freed seven of their colleagues who were in lawful custody, have opened their defence.
That was after the court, presided over by Aboagye Tandoh, had acquitted and discharged six others because the prosecution could not establish a prima facie case against them.
Prince Osei aka Bebe, is facing a charge of possession of firearm; Prince Kofi Acheampong is facing abetment of possession of firearms while Nancy Denta and Kofi Seshie are charged with abetment to escape from lawful custody.
Before the court yesterday, Prince Osei narrated the circumstances that led to his arrest.
Already, he has been sentenced to 30 months’ imprisonment by the court for pleading guilty to escaping from lawful custody when the attack on the police station took place on January 21, 2018.
In his defence, Prince Osei, car spare parts dealer, told the court that he had boarded a vehicle from the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra and was on his way to visit a friend at Dome Kwabenya.
He stated that when the vehicle got to the Ashoman roundabout, police officers stopped it and conducted a search in it.
“They asked me to get down as they conducted the search. I was the only person who alighted while the other passengers were in the car. In the process of conducting the search, the bus conductor brought a handkerchief containing six cartridges and I told the police I knew nothing about it and they took me to the police vehicle,” the suspect narrated.
He said the police searched him for about five minutes but did not find anything on him.
The accused person told the court that the police officers later asked him to return to the vehicle he was in since he claimed the six cartridges were not his.
“While going back to the car, three Nigerians (suspects) who were already in the police vehicle said I had left something in the car and when the officers showed it to me, it was a gun but I told them it wasn’t mine,” Prince Osei posited.
He continued, “They then asked me to follow them to the Kwabenya police station where I was kept for one week. I was there one night when I saw that the police cells had opened and I saw that people were running away so I followed them.”
The prosecutor, Superintendent Kwaku Bempah, cross-examining the accused person, said he (accused) was not being truthful with the court when he said he alone was going to visit his friend. The prosecutor said he (Prince Osei) was going with two other persons.
Prince however, denied that, saying he was alone and was going to visit his friend Kwame Japheth, who is a taxi driver.
Supt. Bempah also accused the Prince Osei of not telling the court the truth when he said the gun was not found on him because both the gun and the cartridges, which had been tendered in as exhibits, were found on him and he told the police that he got them from Prince Kofi Acheampong, another accused person.
But Prince again denied the causation, saying no gun was found on him.
Hearing continues today when lawyers for the other accused persons are expected to cross-examine Prince Osei.