THE TEPA Circuit Court, presided over by Osei Kwame Gyamfi has thrown a 50-year-old local food vendor in Kumasi, Afia
Agyemang aka Afia Sika, into jail for offering a 38-year-old woman (name withheld) she worked with for sale.
Afia Sika wanted to sell the woman for GHÃ‚Â¢6000 (Ã‚Â¢60million).
The court also punished the woman for stealing GHÃ‚Â¢300 from the Tepa Police CommanderÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s office whilst being interrogated.
The convict was found guilty by the court on two counts of human trafficking and stealing, and was consequently sentenced to 30 yearsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ imprisonment on the first charge and five years on the second respectively.
The sentences are to run concurrently.
The facts of the case, as presented by the prosecution, led by Inspector Andrew Asiedu Banafo, were that on October 7, 2009, police received information from a reliable source that the convict, who was hitherto operating a Ã¢â‚¬Ëœchop and drinking barÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ at the Kumasi Race Course, was hatching plans to sell some of her workers.
Acting on the information, the prosecutor said four personnel from the Police Criminal Investigations Department (CID), led by the Divisional Crime Officer, ASP Adu Boahen, arranged to meet with the convict to finalise the amount involved and terms of payment in the deal.
After several minutes of tough bargaining, both parties peacefully settled on GHÃ‚Â¢6000 as the price for the victim who was to be sent to Cote dÃ¢â‚¬â„¢Ivoire for ritual purposes.
Inspector Asiedu Banafo told the court that an officer from the Ghana Education Service (GES) whose services were engaged as part of police investigation strategy, introduced himself to the convict as the dealer who badly needed the victim for ritual purposes in Cote dÃ¢â‚¬â„¢Ivoire.
According to the court, Afia Agyemang, who looked restless whilst being paid the money, received a cash sum of GHÃ‚Â¢2,000 and a cheque for GHÃ‚Â¢4,000, which she hurriedly put in her handbag.
The prosecutor said prior to the payment of the money, a police patrol team organized by the Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent Matthew Osei Adjei, had cordoned off the area where they were meeting.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“So immediately after the money had exchanged hands, the patrol team was signaled, whereupon the convict and the CID personnel were apprehended for the offence. They were taken to the commanderÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s office where the CID officers introduced themselves as police officers,Ã¢â‚¬Â the prosecutor told the court.
Whilst being interrogated, the Inspector said the convict strangely managed to steal GHÃ‚Â¢300 from the commanderÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s office to the chagrin of all those present.
From James Quansah, Kumasi