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Police inspector, 4 others arrested by soldiers for smuggling 231 bags of cocoa

Local News

1 months ago
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A police inspector and four other suspects are in the firm grips of the Akosombo Divisional Police Command following their involvement in an attempted smuggling of 231 bags of dried cocoa beans to neighbouring Togo.

The team of Military personnel, who were on duty around the bridge on the Akuse Dam on Wednesday, were said to have arrested the suspects, which included one Inspector Adam Mahama, who was acting as an escort to the truck carrying the contrabands en route to neighbouring Togo.

The identities of the other four suspects, who are currently being processed for court upon further investigations, have been given as De-Graft Otto Mote, Soga Godwin, Baba Issah, a driver and his mate, Joseph Aha.

According to information, the military personnel, whilst on duty around 9 pm on Wednesday, intercepted two vehicles; a Benz Ateco Truck with registration number GW 4873-22, which was carrying the 231 bags of dried cocoa beans concealed under animal feed and a Mazda Pickup with registration number GW 3556-S, said to be acting as an escort to the cocoa-laden truck.

They were said to have loaded the consignments from Asuboi, near Suhum and were transporting it to Togo via Asutsuare and Adidome.

Upon interrogations and subsequent admission, the suspects were handed over, together with the seized cocoa beans, to the Akosombo Divisional Police for further investigations and possible prosecution on charges of Purchase of Cocoa without authority contrary to S4 of Ghana Cocoa Board Act, 1984(PNDCL81), attempting to smuggle cocoa beans contrary to S317 (i) of the Criminal and Other Offences Act 1960(Act29), and attempting to export cocoa beans which have not been inspected, graded and sealed by an Inspector of cocoa, contrary to S 3 of Cocoa Industry Regulations Act, 1968(NLCD278).

The COCOBOD has in recent times intensified its crackdown on the illicit activities of the cocoa smuggling syndicates who are said to be depriving the country of several millions of Ghana Cedis from proceeds of the sale of cocoa beans.

Over the last four weeks, five persons have been sentenced to a total of 19 years imprisonment with hard labour for their various roles in attempted smuggling of dried cocoa beans to neighbouring Togo.