Wontumi at the court premises. INSET: The convicts leaving the court premises
The Kumasi Circuit Court 4 has fined the 13 Delta Force members who escaped from court a whopping GH¢31,200, or in default serve three years in prison.
The accused persons pleaded guilty to a charge of escaping from lawful custody and they were each fined GH¢2,400, totaling GH¢31,200.
The court, presided over by Ekow Mensah, also ordered the convicts to sign a bond of good behaviour for six months or face a two-year jail term.
They are also facing charges of rioting, causing unlawful damage, conspiracy to commit crime and assault on a public officer in a different case.
The 13 men allegedly assaulted George Adjei, the Ashanti Regional Security Liaison Officer, resulting in their arrest and eventual arraignment before court.
They were handed a two-week remand sentence by the judge when suddenly, they escaped with the assistance of other eight members of the vigilante group.
The 13 people, who later surrendered themselves to the police, are still serving the two-week remand sentence. They would be in court on April 20.
The eight people that worked to ensure their escape from the court were also remanded into prison custody for one week by a different court on Monday.
Counsel for the convicts, Gary Nimako, prayed the court to grant his clients bail, arguing that they were first time offenders.
He noted that the 13 people didn’t have any prior intentions to escape from court, but circumstances on the day compelled them to do so.
Mr. Nimako added that the fact that his clients willingly surrendered themselves to the police later on clearly buttresses his claim.
He then pleaded with the court that the convicts are young and so the court should grant them bail to be part of society to reform.
Wontumi In Court
The Ashanti Regional chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Bernard Antwi-Boasiako aka Wontumi, was also in court.
The outspoken politician, who uncharacteristically looked calm, was said to be at the court to offer morale support to the accused persons who support the NPP.
In a related development, security at the court premises was for the second time running very tight, as armed policemen flooded the area.
The regional police command, which didn’t want to be taken by surprise again, stationed armed men at vantage points.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi