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Dramatic: Police rescue 2 Canadian women …arrest 10 suspected kidnappers

The two female Canadians, who were kidnapped in Kumasi, have been rescued after eight days of intensive search by the Ashanti Regional Police Command in collaboration with other security operatives.

Lauren Patricia Catherine Tilly, 19 and Bailey Jordan Chitty, 20, were kidnapped on June 4, 2019, moments after they alighted from an Uber cab, at their apartment at Silver Spring in Kumasi, at about 8:20pm.

Tilly and Chitty were in Ghana for an exchange programme with the Entrepreneurship Department of the Kumasi Technical University (KsTU).

They were rescued at Akorem in Sawaba, in Kumasi while the vehicle used to kidnap them, a red Toyota Corolla, AS 4169-19, was also retrieved at Achiase, near Sawaba, in the early hours of yesterday.

About 10 suspects, some of them from Kumasi, have been arrested in connection with the act and are in the custody of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) in Accra, but the Ashanti Regional Police Command, would not make further comments on the rescue operation.

The Ghanaian Times gathered that few hours after the kidnap of the victims, the Ashanti Regional Police Command secured a footage of the Uber vehicle that dropped them off at their apartment as well as the Toyota Corolla and forwarded them to the National Security who used the information, to track the suspects.  

The driver of the Uber cab was arrested the following day, by the police here to assist with the investigation.

The two victims were said to be with a group of four, three ladies and a gentleman, who were working as volunteers with the Youth Challenge International, a non-governmental organisation based in Ghana.

A statement issued by the Information Ministry and signed by the Sector Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, partly read “details of the operation and ongoing efforts to ensure that similar incidents are successfully resolved will be made available in a subsequent press briefing.”

According to the statement “government continues to encourage the media and commentators to be circumspect in public commentary on security matters in order not to compromise other related operations”.

It assured citizens and travellers that Ghana remains safe.

The kidnap of the two Canadians brings to two the number of foreign nationals allegedly kidnapped in Kumasi this year, with the first being an Indian, Umpakan Chodri, who was later rescued at Parkoso in the Asokore-Mampong Municipality by Police in Kumasi.

The kidnappers in this case demanded a $500,000 ransom after sending photographs of the victim to his family with a gun pointed into his head.

Some opinion leaders who visited the offices of the Ghanaian Times here commended the Ashanti Regional Police Command for the great efforts in the rescue operation of the foreigners as the act could have tainted the image of Ghana.

FROM KINGSLEY E. HOPE, KUMASI

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