Regional News Mon, 15 Mar 2004

Two robbers 15 years each, a third suspect on the run

Ho, March 15, GNA - Thomas Datsomor, a 19 year-old auto-mechanic apprentice and Francis Gbogbo, 24, a lotto writer, both of Aflao were on Monday sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment each by a High court at Ho on two counts of conspiracy to rob and robbery.

They will serve the sentences concurrently.

The convicts pleaded not guilty but the seven-member jury returned a unanimous verdict of guilty against them.

Passing sentence, Mr Justice Paul Gyaesayor, reminded the convicts of the public outcry against robbery for which they deserved the maximum sentence.

Mr Justice Gyaesayor said the accused persons used a gun, jack-knife, crowbar and knife to commit the crime. They also inflicted harm on a woman and threatened her with death in their victim's house. He said the evidence of prosecution witnesses in the case left no doubt about the involvement of the accused persons in the commission of the crime.

Mr Justice Gyaesayor said the accused persons also caused damage to the doors and louver windows and disconnected telephone lines to their victim's house.

Miss Patience Klinogo, Principal State Attorney, told the court that on August 17, 2001 the accused persons, in addition to one Gademor who had been on the run, scaled the walls of a house at Laklevikope near Aflao.

After entering the house, Datsomor pulled a gun on a woman who was then washing in the house and threatened to kill her if she shouted. According to the Prosecution, the robbers pinned the woman to the ground until she became weak during which time they ransacked rooms in the house.

Miss Klinogo said when the woman regained her strength and attempted to escape, she was confronted by one of the accused persons at the gate who hit her on the forehead and dragged her back into the house unconscious.

She said the accused persons were later arrested at Aflao with Akai and Sanyo remote controls, which were identified by the owner of the house they robbed as her property.

Source: GNA