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Crime & Punishment of Monday, 26 September 2022


Four recent 'ritual' murder cases: Kasoa, Abesim, Mankessim, Wa

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Security is an important component of peace existence and any breach thereof triggers the need for relevant agencies, especially the police to step in to restore peace and serenity.

But even in the midst of peace, there are times that towns or cities have been thrown into state of shock because of murderous incidents that had previously gone unnoticed.

When it so happens, these places become the center of attraction as authorities, especially the police move in to pick up perpetrators and to investigate circumstances surrounding murders that are said to ne ritual in nature.

Two towns in the Central and Upper West regions have earned the news limelight after recent murders, they are Mankessim and Wa. But before them Kasoa and Abesim had recorded same shocking incidents.

This article looks back at four recent murders that have shaken the country.

Abesim ritual murder

On Friday, August 20, 2021; news emerged about a gruesome murder case in Abesim.

Two boys had gone missing for days and a local search party deployed to find them. The suspect who was part of the search party was the last to have been seen with one of the boys. hence a search was conducted at his home.

There, the body of one boy was discovered. Further checks revealed the body of another teenager and according to reports at the time, a yet-to-be identified adult and chopped body parts stocked in his fridge.

A Police statement of August 21, 2021 confirmed some details of the case which included that; the suspect was a 28-year-old architect, Richard Appiah - it was later found out that he is a footballer.

The victims were aged 12 and 15 (Louis Agyemang and Stephen Sarpong) and the bodies were found in his living quarters in an area called Alaska near Abesim.

The case was subsequently transferred from Abesim to a Kaneshie Distict Court. The most recent update GhanaWeb has is of the Attorney General's advice to prosecution to file processes that will allow the case to be transferred to a High Court, according to a Ghana News Agency report.

The case held in August was adjourned to September 14.

Kasoa ritual murder case

Teenagers Felix Nyarko and Nicholas Kini allegedly killed and buried Ishmael on Holy Saturday, April 3, 2021, in what is widely believed to have been an action intended for rituals.

The young offenders, hit the victim's head with a club and cement block several times and dropped his body in a shallow hole.

They have been charged with conspiracy and murder.

Case update: An Accra High Court in late July 2022, adjourned the case to October 10.

The case was adjourned because of the challenge of summoning jurors. The court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo at the last sitting had indicated that the court would be empaneling jurors for the trial to commence.

Mankessim murder case

The circumstances surrounding the murder of a 25-year-old lady, Georgina Asor Botchwey, at Mankessim in the Central Region, triggered talk of ritual motivation by the suspects.

Gerogina left Yeji to attend an admission interview at Ankaful Nursing Training College in Cape Coast and that was the last time her family saw her alive.

After going missing for days, her remains were discovered in a shallow grave at the home of a local chief - the chief and another are currently in custody having been remanded.

The two are, Michael Darko Amponsah, a self-styled pastor, who is also a fiancé of the deceased's sister and the local chief being, Nana Onyaa Clark - at whose house Georgina's corpse was retrieved.

The two have been charged with two counts, namely: conspiracy to commit a crime, to wit murder and murder, contrary to section 46 of the Criminal Offenses Act 1960, Act 29.

The Cape Coast District Court II remanded them into custody to reappear on October 4, 2022.

Wa mystery deaths

"In the case of today's killing, the body was cut open, heart and kidneys removed, testes are also taken. I don't know what they do with it, it is very terrible, terrible," the words of Wa Central Member of Parliament, Abdul Rashid Pelpuo.

He is concerned about rise in mysterious killing of security guards across the capital of the Upper West region.

He stressed that from the modus operandi, the perpetrators are after their victims for ritual purposes. "They are very ritualistic from what we have seen so far," he said in an interview on Accra-based Citi FM on Tuesday, September 20, 2022.

Police currently have a suspect in custody after Kankani Adongo was arrested by the youth in the area and sent to the Chief's palace, from where the Probe into recent serial killings in the Wa Municipality of the Upper West Regional police picked him up on Monday, September 19.

"Suspect Kankani Adongo, was arrested on 19th September, 2022 at Bamahu, a suburb of Wa after extensive collaboration between the Police and community search parties. Suspect is in custody and will be arraigned before the court to face justice," a police statement read in part.