The robbers hiding from the cameras yesterday
Nicholas Eshun, one of the seven suspected armed robbers standing trial for various robberies in the New Juaben Municipality of the Eastern Region, yesterday told the court that he was innocent because he was returning from an all-night church service when the police arrested him on December 31, 2013.
Counsel for Eshun, Seth Wiafe Dankwa, former Member of Parliament (MP) for Aburi-Nsawam, made this submission on behalf of his client during the cross-examination of Isaac Opare Addo, a witness in the case, who was allegedly robbed on December 31, 2013, while he was watching an all-night church service on television at home.
The court presided over by Ebenezer Osei Darko objected to counsel’s line of cross-examination on the basis that the witness could not tell where the accused person was coming from.
Wiafe Dankwa thereafter suggested to the witness that the fact that he (witness) invited the accused (earlier on) to do an estimate for him did not mean he had committed any crime. Furthermore, none of the items allegedly stolen was found on his client.
The courtroom was thrown into spontaneous laughter when Samuel Kwame Akwetey, aka Agbe and Isaac Agormor took turns in the dock to open their defence.
Before they took their oath, they told the court they were members of the Lord’s Voice Church (a popular church in New Juaben) and the church of Pentecost respectively.
The two separately rejected their caution statements, saying they were under duress at the time they were giving the statements.
They said the police subjected them to severe beatings and the fear of losing their lives made them to succumb to the pressure.
They were, however, not able to produce any witness for their claim when they were asked to do so.
When Akwetey first mounted the witness box he said, “I will speak the truth. We went to the house but we did not go with any gun.”
he then asked the court which of the cases he was in the dock for.
When he was reminded it was the Kenkey Factory (a Koforidua suburb) case involving one Georgina Boadi, Akwetey quickly denied the robbery and stressed they had never been to that house.
When Agormor was asked how they had led police to the robbery scene, he insisted that it was the police who rather led them to the scene.
The victim, Georgina Boadi, had earlier stated that after being robbed, she, her daughter and maid servant were subjected to severe beating.
In her evidence, she said she was naked at the time the robbers invaded her bedroom on November 22, 2013 and that Agormor wanted to rape her but Akwetey stopped him and asked her to dress up.
The outright rejection of the statement—which Daniel Obiri, an independent witness for Akwetey, testified was not given under duress by the accused—resulted in a mini trial.
The court adjourned the case until April 8, 2014, when judgement on the Kenkey Factory case would be given.
Also in the dock was Detective L/Copl Emmanuel Agbozie, investigator for one of the medical village robberies.
He said on November 9, 2013, he was on night duty when at about 11:30 pm Dr. Vincent A. Mensah called to say he had been attacked by robbers.
He said he joined the patrol team to the scene at the Medical Village in Koforidua and met the doctor with blood all over his shirt and hands.
He said the doctor refused an offer to be taken to the hospital for treatment.
He, however, came to the station the following day and was issued with a medical form.
Later Detective L/Copl Emmanuel Agbozie said he visited the scene again and saw that the burglary-proof in the bathroom window was widely opened; there were blood stains on the bathroom floor and complainant’s room ransacked.
His flat screen TV, mobile phone and two foreign pistols were taken away by the robbers.
During investigation, L/Copl Agbozie said he discovered that the robbers had come to the victim’s house at about 3:30 am the same day but escaped unhurt after the victim had fired at them.
They returned at night and gained access through the space they had created earlier.
On January 24, 2014 when Samuel Akwetey was arrested he mentioned Godwin Agormor and Harrison Ofori (at large) as his accomplices.
He further mentioned Gideon Boateng as the one who bought the guns they stole from Dr. Mensah and other items.
Later, according to the police officer, Gideon Boateng was arrested and he led the police to retrieve one of the guns and the magazine of the other (yet to be found) containing five and four ammunitions respectively.
Gideon, in his caution statement, said Akwetey, in the company of Harrison, had brought him the gun for safekeeping and as collateral for a GH¢9,000 loan they took from him on that day.
He explained that he had not bought the gun but was only keeping it till his money was paid back.
Gideon was also represented by Wiafe Dankwah. The prosecution was led by Chief State Attorney Emily Addo Okyireh. With her were Priscilla Dikoh and Frederick Tetteh.
From: Rocklyn Antonio, Koforidua
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