All 32 alleged National Security operatives arrested at Akenteng forest reserve, near Osinease in the Eastern Region for mining illegally have been remanded by the Koforidua Circuit Court B. which were monitoring by Ghana News Page.
The court remanded them on the grounds that the prosecution is still investigating the case and it is likely when granted bail the accused persons will not stand trial and may also influence the witnesses in the case and investigations.
The prosecution charged the 32 alleged National Security Operatives with Conspiracy to commit crime and conducting reconnaissance for mines without lawful authority.
family members of the accused came to the District Court at koforidua to witness proceedings.
The suspects, who were wearing military uniforms, invaded the reserve from Akyem-Akanteng onboard a Toyota Land Cruiser V8 with sophisticated rifles on last Tuesday dawn under the guise of clamping down on illegal mining.
The damaged vehicles included a Tundra with registration number NR 9706-20, Toyota Hilux with registration number GT 9683-14 and Nissan Patrol with registration number GW 1966-12 and two other unregistered land cruisers.
Narrating facts of the case to court, the prosecution team led by Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), Sylvester Asare told the court the accused persons are a group of persons who carried themselves as operatives of the National Security.
in January 2021, the security agencies picked information that the accused persons armed with weapons which were undertaking illegal mining activities in the name of National Security and harassing the natives of villages around the Eastern Region with their weapons.
ASP Asare said, that pair the information that reach them says that, the team of officers were wearing both plain clothes and uniformed officers from the National Security Secretariat were dispatched to the Eastern Region to ascertain the facts.
The officers together with the team of police officers from the Eastern Regional Police Command proceededed to the Akenteng forest reserve, near Osinase in the Eastern Region where they met and rescued the accused persons from an angry youth at Akenteng.
The prosecution told the court preliminary investigations revealed that the accused persons are a group of persons who have been carrying themselves as National Security Operatives.
“It was also established that the accused persons, as part of their unlawful activities, threatened, demanded and seized unspecified kilos of gold and huge sums of money from some small-scale miners (galamsey) in the name of National Security,” the facts said.
The 32, who were brought to court were George Asante, Kwaku Frimpong, Alfred Kyei, Yaw Opoku, Richard Nartey, Paul Osei Kuffour, Dominic Beblie, Samuel Kofi Edusei, Silas Boakye Gyan, Joseph Oduro Asare, Muliala Atta, Stephen Opoku, Micheal Quansah, Derrick Adu Kwakye, Razak Suleman, Stephen Kofi Felan, Dominc Quansah, Robert Martey Tettey,Eric Addei, Yakubu Mohammed,Benlord Ababio, Adam Dakurugu, Kwame Isaac, Joe Acquah, Emmanuel Arhin, Samuel Asiedu Gyamfra, David Akakpo, Ebenezer Boateng, Joseph Kwaku Gyamfi, Fuseini Alhassan, Alhassan Asibi and Gabriel Dormate.
When the case came up today, Mr Donkor urged the court to admit his clients to bail.
He argued that the prosecution had not given any reason as to why they, the accused persons should be remanded as his clients will not interfere with investigations and will also avail themselves to stand trial when granted bail.
ASP Asare disagreed with counsel, and urged the court to reject the contention of the defense as they are still investigating the case and when granted bail they will not stand trail and will also interfere with investigations.
He also told the court that the case was still under investigations, and, therefore, the prosecution was in court to meet the 48-hour constitutional deadline for an accused person to be produced in court upon arrest.
The Koforidua Circuit Court presided over by Mrs Mercy Kotey ruled that when granted bail it is the likely the suspects will not stand trial and would also interfere with investigations
She, therefore, remanded all accused persons to police custody and adjourned to May 24, 2021.