An Accra circuit court on Tuesday sentenced two men who posed as police officers to various terms of imprisonment in hard labour.
They had earlier pleaded guilty to some charges.
Michael Asare, unemployed and Ernest Kofi Baah, taxi driver, were charged with dressing in police uniform, conspiring and robbing one Louis Farouk of his bag containing an amount of GH¢2,500.
Michael pleaded guilty to the charges of possessing police accoutrement and defrauding by false pretences and was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment on each count in hard labour to run concurrently.
He is also to pay a fine of GH¢1,200 or in default serve six months in addition.
Ernest, on the other hand, pleaded guilty to the charge of robbery and was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment in hard labour.
Michael, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge of conspiracy to commit crime and robbery, while Ernest pleaded not guilty to the charges of conspiracy, possessing police accoutrement and defrauding by false pretence.
The court adjourned the matter to March 21 for commencement of trial for the other charges they denied.
The prosecutor, Chief Inspector Kwabena Adu, told the court that the first complainant – Louis – is a mason and resident of Ablekuma in the Ga West municipality of the Greater Accra Region.
The second, third and fourth complainants are Frank Ansah Sekyi, Ofori Atta, Shadrack Ofosu respectively – all farmers residing at Aburi in the Eastern Region – and the fifth complainant, Emmanuel Kumi, businessman, lives at Odorkor in Accra.
Chief Inspector Adu said Michael and Ernest both reside at Ablekuma.
On January 23, this year at about 1630 hours, the convicts dressed in police uniform on board a taxi with registration number GT 2162 W and attacked the first complainant with police shocker, subjected him to severe beatings, robbed him of his bag containing the GH¢2,500 and bolted.
Louis made a report to the police and the convicts were subsequently arrested for further investigations.
The prosecutor said when a search was conducted on them, one fake police identity card bearing the name Michael, three black police T-shirts, two pairs of police boots, one police helmet, one police long baton, two pairs of police trousers, two reflectors and one shocker allegedly used to perpetrate the crime were retrieved.
Chief Inspector Kwabena Adu told the court that while investigation was ongoing, Frank, Ofori, Shadrack and Emmanuel, came to the station and reported that the convicts claimed they were police commanders from the National Police Headquarters in-charge of enlistment into the Service.
Police Chief Inspector Adu said they told the police that they could help recruit their (victims’) wards into the Service.
The two therefore demanded and collected an amount of GH¢42,000 and another GH¢8,500.00 under the pretext of recruiting their wards into the Ghana Police Service, but after collecting the money, they vanished into thin air.
He said the convicts admitted the offence upon interrogation.