The High Court in Accra has fixed March 7, 2023, to start the trial of the two teenagers being held for the murder of 11-year Ishmael Mensah Abdallah, at Kasoa in the Central Region.
This was after the court presided over by Justice Lydia OseiMarfo concluded a pre-trial.
The State said it will call seven prosecution witnesses to make its case before a seven-member jury. The teenagers have been charged with conspiracy and murder.
The court indicated that the trial would commence on March 7, next year, but indicated that because accused were in custody, the matter was being adjourned to January 25, 2023, for mention.
The two teenagers are being held over the murder of Abdallah, who they allegedly lured into an uncompleted building and killed in April, 2021.
The accused, including a minor, allegedly hit the victim’s head with a club and a cement block and dumped his body in a shallow hole.
The teenagers, a 15-year-old boy (name withheld) and his alleged accomplice, who is 18 years, were on August 16, 2021, committed by the Kaneshie District Court, presided over by Ms Rosemond AgyiriDuodoo, to stand trial at the High Court on the charge of murder.
According to section 17 (3) of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2003 (Act 653), “A charge made jointly against a juvenile and a person who has attained the age of eighteen years shall be heard by a court of summary jurisdiction other than a juvenile court”.
It means that the two, if convicted, will face a maximum sentence of three years and the trial, which will last for six months, will also not be open to the media.
The court has fixed May 26, 2022, for Case Management Conference and the dates for the trial to officially commence.
The facts of the case, as presented at the Magistrate court, are that the two teenagers, who lived at Lamptey, had been friends since 2008.
The first accused is said to have been watching television channels which entertained Mallams and other spiritualists to promote their prowess in making people instant millionaires.
The accused, according to the prosecution, made his intention known to the 18-year-old, who advised that there was a certain spiritualist in the Volta Region who could carry out the plan for them.
“The second accused, who does not own a phone, provided the phone number of the said spiritualist to the first accused, who had access to his mother’s phone.After contacting the said spiritualist, he agreed to help if only they could provide a human being and GH¢5,000 for the rituals,” the prosecution said. -GNA