Three persons picked up by state security agencies on suspicion of engaging in plotting to destabilise the country made their maiden appearance before an Accra Magistrates Court yesterday slapped with five charges.
These include conspiracy to manufacture arms and ammunition without lawful authority and possession of explosives and firearms without lawful excuse.
The three suspects are Dr Frederick Yao Mac-Palm, Dornyah “Ezor” Kafui, a local weapon manufacturer and Bright Allan Debrah Ofosu aka BB or ADC, freight manager.
Their plea was not taken by the court.
Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Sylvester Asare prayed the court to remand the accused into custody to enable investigations to continue.
The Application was granted and the three were remanded into BNI custody.
He pleaded that they are specifically remanded into BNI custody since the institution is the lead investigative body.
ASP Asare assured the court that the three suspects would be allowed to see their families and their lawyers.
Mr Victor Adawudu, the lead counsel for the three accused questioned why the plea of his clients could not be taken since it appears the state had investigated the matter and decided to charge them.
He also said it was the court that had the power to determine whether to keep them in custody or not. He insisted the accused persons are presumed innocent till proven guilty.
ASP Asare responded that prosecution was confused as to the position of the defence legal team. He said investigations had not been concluded that is why they don’t want their plea to be taken.
The Magistrate hearing the case Rosemond Dodua Agyiri said that the plea ought not to be taken because some of the charges were beyond her jurisdiction.
She said she understood the need to investigate the matter but advised prosecution to consider the charges closely by the next court date.
On the subject of bail, she relied on same reason to decline the request and rather remanded them into BNI custody.
A fourth person named only as Sulley is meanwhile said to be on the run.
Dr Fred MacPlam, was on Friday, arrested in a Police, Military and National Security joint operation for allegedly manufacturing guns and explosives at the health facility.
He was arrested alongside an accomplice in the custody of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) to assist in further investigations.
They were said to have imported heavy-duty state-of-the-art-bombs and guns manufacturing equipment and explosives in the country and had already begun production.
A source disclosed to the Ghanaian Times last Sunday that 15 pieces of assault rifles had already been manufactured and stockpile of explosives were uncovered at a backroom inside the hospital.
It further stated that Police Crime Scene investigators from the headquarters in Accra had already visited the hospital to gather further details on the alleged crime.
The source said the medical doctor and his accomplice had been on the security wanted listed for more than a year before his arrest last Friday.
The Ghanaian Times discovered ‘consultation’ at the hospital had been brought to a halt for now.
BY TIMES REPORTER