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General News of Monday, 2 October 2006

Source: GNA

Kwadwo Ababio discharged

Accra, Oct. 2, GNA - An Accra Circuit Court on Monday discharged Kwadwo Ababio, one of the four persons arrested soon after testifying before the Justice Georgina Wood Committee during its public hearing in August 2006 and charged with drug offences.

This was after Ms Gertrude Aikins; Chief State Attorney, told the Court that she was withdrawing charges levelled against Ababio. She said she had earlier filed a nolle prosequi to that effect. Nolle prosequi is the power of the Attorney-General to stop prosecution or discontinue with prosecution of an accused person.

Mr Alfred Agyei Mensah, who represented Ababio, who was not in court, said: "We are grateful to the Court."
Ababio and three other were being held for conspiring, importing of narcotic drugs without licence, engaging in prohibited business relating to narcotic drugs, importing 78 parcels of narcotic drugs and establishing and promoting businesses related to narcotic drugs. Their pleas were not taken and they were remanded into Police custody.
The Committee, whose report was presented last Friday, exonerated Kwadwo Ababio, aka Kwadwo Nsamankwaa.
Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah, Minister of the Interior, said on Friday when he presented Government's position on the Justice Georgina Wood Report that the Committee found that Kwadwo Ababio was not at the meeting that Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Kofi Boakye held with four others in his house over the disappearance of cocaine from the MV Benjamin Vessel.
He said the Committee was 93convinced that Kwadwo Ababio was not at the said meeting and had nothing to do with the illegal importation of the cocaine".
A little drama took place that day, when Ababio went out to drink water and was heckled by some Police Officers, who attempted to arrest him.
Mr Ababio's Counsel, Mr Alfred Agyei-Mensah intervened and reported the incident to the Committee but Justice Wood said there was little she could do to stop the arrest of the witness once he had finished testifying before it.
Justice Wood said the operation of the Police was different from that of the Committee and she could, therefore, not interfere with the work of the Police.
This was during the playing of the controversial tape recording of proceeding at the meeting between ACP Boakye and the four persons in ACP Boakye's house at the public hearing of the Georgina Wood Committee. Mr Kan-Dapaah said the Attorney-General had, therefore, directed that charges levelled against Kwadwo Ababio be dropped and prosecution discontinued.

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