General News of Wednesday, 19 July 2017
A District Court in Accra has ordered that the 19 suspects being held for the gruesome murder of Major Maxwell Adam Mahama be moved from police cells to Prison custody.
It follows a request put forth by police prosecutors on Wednesday, on grounds that prison custody will be the safest place for the suspects who are currently dotted in police cells in Accra and beyond.
Police prosecutor Supt. George Amega, raised security concerns over the suspects’ continuous stay in police cells, for which reason he prayed the court to remand them into prison custody, TV3’s Komla Klutse reported.
Lawyers for the suspect did not oppose the request, but called for a speedy trial, our correspondent added.
The lawyers told the court that but for the new development in the case, they would have applied for bail for the suspects who are currently facing committal proceedings for alleged murder of the military officer.
Meanwhile, the case docket has been sent to the Attorney General’s office which will study the docket with all the statements of the suspects, post mortem report of the deceased and other relevant documents and prepare the bill of indictment to commit the 29 for trial at the High Court.
The case has been adjourned to August 3, when prosecutors are expected to begin the committal proceedings.
Major Mahama, a member of the 5th Infantry of the Ghana Armed Forces, was jogging at Denkyira-Obuasi at about 8:30am on May 29, 2017 when he was lynched and a part of his body set ablaze, the Military High Command confirmed in a statement. His body was filled with marks of assault including multiple deep cut wounds on the head and a partially burnt body, the Police later said.
A swoop in the town Tuesday, May 30, 2017 by a team of Police and military personnel led to the rounding up of a total of 166 people made up of 80 women and 86 men.
They screened after which five of them were arrested. Two others, including the assembly member, later turned themselves in to the Police.
Some other suspects who attempted to flee the town were arrested across the country and put before courts in those places but the case was consolidated by the Police and brought to Accra to face trial.
But at least 50 of the suspects were discharged as investigators were unable to find evidence or link them to the murder. Prosecutors say they will use some of them as witnesses in the case when trial begins.