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Crime & Punishment of Saturday, 19 October 2019

Source: ghananewsagency.org

Community police assistant fined for stealing cocoa beans


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A District Magistrate Court in Enchi has fined a community police assistant GHC1,200.00 for allegedly stealing six bags of dried cocoa beans valued at GHC2,856.00.

Amos Cobbina, who is attached to the Dadieso Police Station pleaded not guilty to the count of stealing but was convicted after trial.

The convict who in default would serve 12 months imprisonment in hard labour was in addition ordered by the Court to sign a bond to be of good behaviour for 12 months.

Prosecuting Detective Joseph Kwadwo Agyare, told the court presided over by Mr Eric Baah Boateng, that the complainant is a member of the community watchdog committee at Atekyem, a suburb of Dadieso in the Suaman District with Cobbina residing in the same area.

He said on November 26, 2017, around 5:30 am, the complainant and his members were on patrol duties when they spotted a taxi cab with registration number AS 1534-14 being driven by one Abudulai Issah at Dadieso Zongo.

According to the prosecutor, the convict alighted and with the assistance of the driver three bags of dried cocoa beans were brought out from the taxi cap and parked same at the entrance of a cocoa depot belonging to Abukari who emerged after the beans were offloaded.

Detective Agyare said Cobbina who noticed the presence of the complainant and his members re-board the taxi cab and bolted.

The prosecutor said the complainant became suspicious and asked the depot owner to take custody of the three bags of dried cocoa beans while he proceeded to the charge office to lodge a complaint.

He said while the complainant was at the police station one Duah Boakye Michael a purchasing clerk at Kwabenakrom arrived with a complaint, that at dawn thieves broke into his cocoa shed and made away with six bags of dried cocoa beans he purchased from Produce Buying company and he identified the various bags with his society number WNA1-01-18.

On the same day, the prosecution said the police had information indicating that the convict in the morning was seen pouring dried cocoa beans from an original society numbered sacks into two different cocoa sacks.

He said based on the tip-off the police proceeded to the convict’s house and found the said two bags of dried cocoa beans in his room of which he claimed ownership and it was sent to the police station together with him.

According to Detective Sergeant Agyare, prior to Cobbina’s arrest, he told the police that he found seven bags of dried cocoa beans along the Karlo Gyampokrom motor road and was ordered by a police officer to send the cocoa beans to the charge office but instead diverted three bags to Dadieso Zongo.

The prosecutor said on December 25, 2017, the convict sent the remaining bags of dried cocoa beans to the police station and after investigations, he was charged with the offence.

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