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Nana Kwarteng Amaning, the self-styled chief (left) and Jacob Osei being marched to prison by a police officer
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An attempt by a self-styled chief at Adum Kwanwoma in the Ashanti Region to get his prison term reduced has landed him in more trouble as his jail term has rather been increased.

Nana Kwarteng Amaning’s one-year jail term given by a Kumasi Circuit Court has been increased to 4 years by a High Court which found him culpable of selling lands that he had no rights to.

The self-styled chief, together with two others, Jacob Osei and Abena Jumaa, was earlier in August 2010 arraigned before a Kumasi Circuit court on two counts of conspiracy to commit crime and fraudulent transactions in land.

The prosecutor stated that in 2008, the accused persons unlawfully sold pieces of land which they had no title to. After police investigations, the three accused persons were arraigned before a circuit court in Kumasi where they pleaded not guilty to all charges levelled against them.

The presiding judge, Eric Baah, however found them culpable and sentenced each of them to a six-month jail term for conspiring to commit crime. On count two, the self-styled chief, was sentenced to a 1-year prison term.

The other two, Jacob Osei and Abena Jumaa, were each sentenced to a 6-month prison term on count two. The sentences were to run concurrently, meaning Nana Kwarteng Amaning would be behind bars for one year, with the other two spending six months each in jail.

The court also ruled that an amount of GH˘25,000, which is double the amount of the monies that the accused persons received from the sale of the lands, be paid to the victims of their illegal activities.

The accused persons thought the presiding judge had been harsh on them so they filed an appeal at the High Court in Kumasi presided over by Justice Iddrisu Mahamadu.

After thoroughly going through the case, the High Court Judge, Justice Mahamadu, on August 23, 2011, observed that the earlier sentences meted out to the accused persons were too lenient and not deterrent enough.

He therefore sentenced each of the accused persons to one year in prison for the charge of conspiracy.

On count two, he sentenced Nana Kwarteng to three years’ imprisonment in hard labour. The judge slapped an additional two-year jail term each on the other two, stating that the sentences of the three accused persons should run concurrently.

The High Court Judge again ruled that the GH˘ 25,000, which the circuit court ruled in 2010 to be paid to the victims, should rather be paid to the state and in default each of accused person would serve an additional 12-month jail term. The court said that nothing stopped victims in the illegal land transaction from taking civil action against the accused persons in court to reclaim their monies by way of damages and costs.

Meanwhile, the legitimate Adum Kwanwomahene, Nana Kofi Agyei IV, has announced that victims of the illegal activities of the three accused persons should report to him at his palace.

Source: I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi

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