Five policemen, who are being investigated by the Police Intelligence and Professional Standards Bureau (PIPS) for extortion and illegally detaining Michael Mensah, a truck driver, have secretly returned the ‘bribe’ money to their victim.
The five, returned the GH¢ 300 they took from the victim and an additional GH¢ 400 to cover any transportation expenses the victim might have incurred, in pursuing justice in the case.
Even though the five policemen have all denied in their statements to PIPS, that they neither detained nor extorted money from their victim, they managed to get Michael Mensah to the Antoah deity in the Ashanti Region, to overturn the curse placed on them.
They later held a meeting with the victim at Kata hotel, in Accra, on March 21, 2014, which was attended by plain clothed officers from the Regional Police Command, where the money was refunded.
Evidence available to The Chronicle indicates that after refunding the money, the five officers, who did not know that CID officers witnessed the refund of the money, prevailed upon their victim to withdraw the case he lodged against them at PIPS.
The victim, Michael Mensah would, however, not kowtow to this demand, and went ahead to lodge an official complaint at the Accra Central Police Station against the five officers, using the returned money as an evidence.
Michael was apprehended by the police patrol team in January, this year, after being accused of smelling of Indian hemp. He was subsequently detained for hours at the Sowutuom Police station, without any charge. The five policemen later threatened to imprison him if he did not pay GH¢ 1000 (One thousand Ghana Cedis).
Micheal said the patrol team returned two hours later to the cell where he was being held and after sensing that his life was in danger and that he could be framed up, pleaded with the police men to beat down the ‘bribe’ they were demanding.
Both parties settled on GH¢ 300, which he readily gave to them. The money was to fuel his truck to distribute some goods on behalf of the company he works for.
“They threatened to frame me up and imprison me, so I decided to pay. My intention was to get out of the cells, deliver the goods for my company and return to collect my money,” Micheal narrated.
Michael later reported the matter to PIPS for redress, but the policemen involved vehemently denied that they ever took any money from him.
The officers allegedly threatened him, a conduct which forced the victim to relocate from his house.
Michael later called Alhaji Gomda of Daily Guide, who in turn called the Greater Accra Regional Commander to report the threat on the life of Michael.
Michael has since written to PIPS about the refund of the money, and the insistence by the policemen that he withdraws the case. The Chronicle has investigated the case and thoroughly followed developments, but is awaiting the final report from PIPS.
The paper does so in accordance with the recent call by the Inspector General of police for the media to help the police institution purge itself.
The Chronicle is aware that that the investigator, tasked to investigate the matter at PIPS, has long concluded his work and submitted his findings to his superiors.