General Lance Corporal Raymond Amegashie, the policeman and three others who robbed a trader of GH¢45,000 and $1,000 in her supermarket at Nungua, Accra, were yesterday sentenced to a total of 70years imprisonment by an Accra Circuit Court.
The accused pleaded not guilty to the charge of conspiracy to commit crime and robbery, but the court said prosecution led evidence to prove the guilt of accused.
Consequently, Corporal Amegashie was sentenced to 20 years on each count to run concurrently.
His accomplices, Ibrahim Ayirebo a motor mechanic was handed 18 years sentence on each count, whilst Bright Dorkanu, a driver’s mate and Stanley Akorli, a driver were given 16 years each for conspiracy to commit crime and robbery. The sentences were to run concurrently.
Accused Ayirebo, Dorkanu and Akorli were arrested few days after the robbery with their share of the booty, but the first accused, Corp. Amegashie who managed to escape with the AK47 rifle was arrested on February 12, 2018 at Tsopoli Police Barrier on the Accra – Aflao road and GH¢19,942.00 and $600 was retrieved from him.
In passing sentence, Mr Aboagye Tandoh, presiding, referred to a decision of the Supreme Court in Abu and others vs the Republic which says that sentences should reflect major and minor roles played by the accused.
He said that the court took into consideration the plea for mitigation and the period accused spent in custody.
The judge stated that the accused acted together with a common purpose to rob Helen Asante, and described Amegashie, the policeman as the head of the gang, Ayirebo, the operating officer, Dorkanu, the general overseer and Akorli as the liaison officer.
He said even though Akorli was candid in his evidence, his attempt to exonerate himself overshadowed his truthfulness.
Both counsel for Amegshie and Akorli, Mr Paul Asibi Abariga and Kwame Oppong Addae told the court their clients had shown remorse, explaining that they were married with children.
Chief Inspector Kwabena Adu, then prosecuting told the court that Helen is a trader and operates a provision store at Nungua near the Agricultural Development Bank (adb).
He said Amegashie was stationed at Tema Regional Special Weapons and Tact (SWAT) Unit, Ayirebo resides at Tema Community One, Dorkanu also lived at Ashiaman, whilst Akorli resides at Tema Gulf City.
The prosecution said on December 12, last year, the accused planned to go on a robbery spree.
The court heard that Amegashie who was detailed for a guard duty at Glotec Ghana abandoned his post with his AK 47 rifle plus 20 rounds of ammunitions.
Prosecution said Ayirebo armed with a pistol and together with Amegashie boarded a taxi with registration number GX9514-13 driven by Akorli and headed to the complainant’s shop at Nungua.
Prosecution said Amegashie, Ayirebo and Dorkanu got off the vehicle and walked to the complainant’s shop amidst sporadic gunfire and made away with GH¢45,000 and $1,000.00.
After the robbery, the accused boarded the taxi and sped off towards Tema and the complainant reported the incident to the Police.
The prosecution said Ayirebo, Dorkanu and Akorli were nabbed at the Community 18 Abattoir Police check point and their share of the booty retrieved from them.
Chief Insp. Adu said Amegashie managed to escape with his AK 47 rifle and spent the night around the Tema Motorway Roundabout.
He said the policeman returned his rifle the following day.
Prosecution said Amegashie in his attempt to escape, was, however, arrested at Tsopoli Police Barrier on the Accra -Aflao road.
BY MALIK SULLEMANA