The Kaneshie District Court has turned down a bail application for five Chinese nationals including a woman, who are being held for engaging in illegal employment and residing in the country without permit.The court presided over by Eleanor Kakra Barnes-Botchwey noted that defence counsel had failed to disclose to the court their permanent place of abode.
The court noted that the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) was investigating how they were residing in the country illegally and when granted bail, they might go into hiding.
It held that although the accused persons were entitled to bail under the law but stated that, the grant of bail was under the discretion of the court.
According to the court, the charges levelled against the accused persons in Takoradi was entirely different from the one in Accra.
In Takoradi, they are being held over the charge of conspiracy and threat of harm. A Circuit Court in Takoradi has admitted them to bail after asking them to make a security deposit of ¢10,000 each and further ordered to deposit their passport with the court.
It further directed the GIS to ensure that they go Takoradi to stand trial.
The court further ordered the GIS to secure an Interpreter and adjourned the matter to December 30.
The five accused persons are Dehang Li, Haifang Zhou, Jiauong Huan, Li Hui Lauo and Jung Gang Quin. They were arrested on December 4, this year on suspicion that they did not have residence permits and were also engaged in illegal employment.
Soon after their arrest, the GIS arraigned them.
Opposing vehemently to a bail application, the GIS said it found it intriguing that a Chinese national would travel to Ghana and engage in the business of selling noodles at Wassa Akropong in the Western Region.
Chief Superintendent of Immigration, Peter Philip Andoh prayed the Court not grant bail to five Chinese nationals.
Chief Supt. Andoh it was not possible that the accused persons would come to Ghana to prepare and sell Indomie, a vocation reserved for Ghanaians.
Referring to defence counsel assertion that individuals within the country were to enjoy their fundamental human rights, Chief Supt Andoh noted those rights were not absolute.
He recounted the one of the accused, for example, had been in the country since 2016 with without permit adding that the accused person cannot enjoy that illegality.
Applying for bail, Dr J.E.K Abaka, prayed the court to admit the accused persons to bail pending trial.
Dr Abaka noted that his clients would not abscond since their passports were in the custody of the Regional Commander in the Western Region.
He was not enthused over the fact that his clients were arrested on December 3, this year and put before a Takoradi Circuit court over conspiracy and threat of harm.
According to defence counsel as soon as the Circuit Court in Takoradi had granted them bail, they were arrested the following day and sent to Accra.
There was confusion when the GIS officials decided to escort them back to the custody. Accused persons wanted to speak to their counsel but the GIS officials declined.
It took the intervention of Chief Supt Andoh before the GIS officials could escort them.