Koforidua- Two Ex-police Officers Jailed 210yrs
A Koforidua High Court yesterday handed a 210-year jail term to two ex-police officers – Augustine Nti-Peprah, 31 and Eric Anto, 27 – as well as their accomplice, Anthony Dagadu Djampo, 30, after it found them guilty of robbery and conspiracy.
Each convict got 70 years as they were given 35 years each for robbery and conspiracy.
The sentences would run concurrently, bringing the jail term for each to 35 years with hard labour.
Handing his judgement, the trial judge, Justice G.B. Suurebareh, explained that robbery, being a first degree felony, could attract a life imprisonment, but the law gives room for reduction of the sentence, taking into account a lot of issues which he enumerated.
He commended the investigator, Detective Stephen Tei Martey, for a good work done.
Justice Suurebareh said it would be prudent that such talents were identified by the Ghana Police Service and nurtured.
He said that the prosecution had been able to prove that the three convicts and their runaway accomplices were indeed guilty of charges pressed against them.
Whilst reading his judgement, he explained that the conviction of the three “is to send out a clear message to persons who are contemplating such criminal life that it is not attractive at all.”
Justice Suurebareh was of the opinion that it would be proper to further investigate the convicts to ensure that any properties they might have obtained through crime, were confiscated to the state.
The judge further ordered that all police accoutrements in possession of the convicts be returned to the Ghana Police Service.
The facts of the case as presented by the State Attorney, Frederick Tetteh, were that on the night of April 13, 2013, the complainant in the case had arrived from Kumasi to Koforidua at about 10:30 pm.
Mr. Tetteh continued that the complainant was attacked at gunpoint and robbed by the convicts of his Nissan FX 35 Infinity 4X4 vehicle valued at GH¢63,500.00, cash and other valuables.
The convicts also bolted with a Galaxy X3 mobile phone, Samsung mini phone, a Dell laptop, Invitta and Promado Engine watches, a booster amplifier, Jeans trousers, two T-shirts, a belt, HFC and UT Bank cheque books – all valued at GH¢4,510.00 and an amount of GH¢5,000.00.
According to the prosecutor, the complainant was attacked by the convicts who were armed with pump action guns in the company of two of their accomplices known as D-Black and Paapee, both on the run.
The complainant and a witness in his car drove through the National Investment Bank (NIB) area en route to the ministries road when they were signalled to stop somewhere along their journey by Augustine Nti-Peprah and Eric Anto who were then in a VW Golf saloon car and dressed in police uniforms, according to the prosecutor.
Mr. Tetteh stated that the complainant obliged and the two questioned why they (complainant and the other occupant of the vehicle) were driving an unregistered vehicle at that time of the night and asked for the driver’s licence.
Anthony Dagadu later drew close and joined the two uniformed men and arrested the complainant.
The State Attorney said the convicts subsequently bundled him and a passenger (now witness in the case) into the rear seat of the vehicle and Nti-Peprah drove the vehicle towards the Regional Police Headquarters at Galloway, under the pretext of handing them over to the Regional MTTU of the Ghana Police Service.
However, as they were approaching the Police Headquarters, Nti-Peprah sped off and got onto the Koforidua-Mamfe road instead.
He said they beat the complainant mercilessly as they managed to safely go through the Mile 50 and Tinkong Police checkpoints unnoticed because they were dressed as policemen.
At a junction near a village called Kwamoso, Mr. Tetteh indicated, Nti-Peprah stopped and pulled their victims from the vehicle.
Moments later, a red Volvo saloon car registered GT 4161 V with three occupants, including Dagadu, who was also armed with a pump action gun, pulled up.
Dagadu joined Nti-Peprah and Anto to further beat their victims before robbing them.
Luck however eluded the robbers, as on the following day, April 12, 2013, when they attempted to re-spray the vehicle to give it a new look, the police, acting on a tip-off, arrested Nti-Peprah at Buduburam, near Kasoa in the Central Region.
During interrogation, he mentioned the names of his accomplices but police managed to arrest two while two others fled and were still on the run.
From: Rocklyn Antonio, Koforidua