3 armed dealers get 14 years

A High court in Kumasi has jailed three armed dealers, who were arrested in December, 2015, 14 years six months.

Umaru Sata, 73, a Burkinabe, was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment, and Sulemana Alhassan, 27, and Frank Badu, 25, both Ghanaians, would serve six months and four years’ respectively, all in hard labour.

They pleaded not guilty, but were found guilty by the seven-member jury after the three-year trial.

The court presided by Justice Obiri Yeboah ordered that the seized arms should be handed over to the Ministry of the Interior in the presence of journalists and security personnel.

The arms were 11 AK 47 assault rifles, nine D3 machines, said to be used exclusively by the military, four firing pins, 140 short machine guns, 1,500 pistol ammunitions and 6,080 AK 47 ammunitions.

It was quite a scene as Alhassan knelt in the dock and pleaded for leniency.

Earlier the Principal State Attorney, Marian Louis Simon, prosecutor, told the court that Alhassan had cooperated, and could be treated as an informant, resulting in six months jail term.

Counsel for Sata, James Asamoah, urged the court to be lenient with his client, since he was a first time offender, moreover he has 11 children, six with his current wife, and five with other women.

It is recalled that the Ashanti Regional Police Command arrested the suspects on December 11, 2015, which was described as the biggest arms haul in the history of the Kumasi Police.

The accused were transporting the cache of ammunition to Niger. The police earlier, arrested four suspects, three of whom were Ghanaians.

The Burkinabe claimed to have bought the weapons from Cote d’Ivoire and was transporting them to Niger before he was arrested at his Alabar residence.

FROM KINGSLEY E. HOPE, KUMASI

 

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