Crime & Punishment of Sunday, 24 August 2014
The Ashanti Regional Police Command has arrested 12 suspected armed robbers who are alleged to have committed five separate violent crimes in the region.
The police also retrieved one AK 47 assault rifle, one pump action gun, a locally made pistol, knives, mobile phones, cash and a small bag of powdered pepper.
The police also managed to locate an AK 47 rifle which was snatched from a police officer and buried in a farm.
Briefing the media in Kumasi, the Regional Police Commander, DCOP Nathan Kofi Boakye, said on July 27, 2014, at 7:00 p.m., a Chinese mining engineer and his compatriot, together with their Ghanaian police escort, were sending gold from Manso Mpatase to Manso Nkwanta when six of the suspects shot one of the tyres of the vehicle they were in.
The suspects– Kwame Appiah, Oppong Awuah, Eric Ampong and three others who are on the run– assaulted the occupants of the vehicle, snatched the gun from the police officer and robbed them of a quantity of unprocessed gold, two mobile phones and cash of GH¢500,000.
On August 17, 2014, the Police Rapid Deployment Force located and arrested Kwame Appiah from his hideout in Kejetia. He led the police to arrest the two other suspects. The police retrieved the gun from Eric Ampong’s mining site at Mpatase.
Those on the run are Anthony, Kwabena Asuo, aka Rasta, and Kofi Adu, aka Azorzi.
Three other suspected armed robbers, Musah Kassim, Mohammed Oliver, Alidu Issifu and Yusif Musah, who are currently on bail after an alleged robbery, dressed in mourning clothes on August 16, 2014, and hired a vehicle to a funeral at Mankessim in the Central Region.
He said they made a part payment of GH¢300 for the vehicle they hired, but on their way to the funeral, Mohammed Kassim pretended he wanted to attend to the call of nature and immediately the driver stopped, the suspects pointed a gun at him, covered his mouth and tied him to a tree.
The driver later untied himself and reported the case to the police. Through a vehicle tracking device, the police traced the criminals to Kintampo and arrested them. One of the suspects, Fuseini, managed to escape.
The Regional Police Commander said in a related development, Yaw Asante, Yaw Amoah and Kofi Lapoln, all armed with guns and wearing face masks, broke into the house of a victim at Kotwi New Site on August 17, 2014, at 1: a.m. and tied up three of the occupants of the house.
They made away with Dell laptops, Samsung Galaxy Note Pads, assorted mobile phones, wedding rings, pen drive, a driving license and other documents.
Investigations led to the arrest of the suspects who are currently under investigation.
DCOP Kofi Boakye said another gang of robbers, Samuel Yeboah and his accomplices, currently at large, hired a taxicab to convey locally made gin, akpeteshi, from Awhia-Nkwanta to Akokerri.
On reaching Akokerri, they re-directed the driver to a village, Sodua, where Samuel Yeboah ordered the driver to stop. When the driver hesitated, they sprayed his eyes with powdered pepper and pushed him away from the car.
They took the victim’s driving licence, mobile phone and GH¢350.
Investigations led to the arrest of Samuel Yeboah from his hideout in Kusa, a village near Fomena, and a search revealed a quantity of powdered pepper.
One of the suspected robbers, Joseph Kwaku Derry, is believed to be among a syndicate that terrorises motorists on the Awhia-Nkwanta Akokerri road. He was arrested with a locally made pistol.