An Accra Fast Track High Court (Criminal Division) has remanded a 46-year-old businessman into the custody of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) for allegedly exporting 6,240kgs of cannabis sativa, a narcotic drug worth $20m, to the United Kingdom (UK).
The accused, Kofi Appianin Ennin, was arrested through a collaboration between the UK security agencies and Ghana’s Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) when the drug had successfully left the shores of Ghana for that country.
The businessman is facing a two-count charge each of exportation of narcotic drug without licence from the minister of health and possession of narcotic drug without lawful authority.
According to the prosecution led by Fred K. Awindago, an Assistant State Attorney, Ennin, between January 15 and 29, 2014 at the Takoradi Harbour, exported from Ghana to the UK, 6,240kgs of the drug without licence.
The prosecution also alleged that between 15th January and 10th February, 2015 the accused, through the Takoradi Harbour again, exported three tonnes (3,000kgs) of the drug to the same country without licence.
However, Ennin has denied the offence.
At the hearing of the case in the court presided over by Justice Abdullai Iddrisu yesterday, lead counsel for the accused, Kwame Boafo Akuffo, drew the attention of the court to the ill-health of his client.
He said the BNI, in whose custody his client had been kept, had prevented him (Ennin) from having access to his medications.
Mr Akuffo stated that his client, who is diabetic, had been with the BNI for 17 days without his drugs.
Mr Awindago said the necessary measure would be taken for the accused to have access to his medication.
The judge directed the BNI to allow the accused access to his medications.
The case has been adjourned to July 3, 2015.
NACOB in 2014 received intelligence report from UK indicating that a 20-footer container numbered MSCU 0186777 had been intercepted.
The prosecution said the container was supposed to have 112 sacks of gari but was stuffed with compressed cannabis sativa (wee) weighing 6,240kgs.
The recipient of the said container mentioned the suspect as the one who exported the said cargo.
The prosecution said between January 15 and February 10, 2015 whilst investigations were underway, another 40-footer container numbered MORU: 1114371 was intercepted at London Gatwick, adding that the said container revealed 1,000 cartons of yam, 53 bags of gari and a total of 3,000kgs of compressed substance suspected to be wee concealed in the boxes of yam.
He stated that documents covering the shipment were received and when the freight forwarder in Ghana was contacted, he mentioned Ennin as the one who assigned him to do the exportation on his behalf.
The prosecution said the freight forwarder led the investigator to the warehouse of Ennin at Asheyei along the Accra-Dodowa road where the packaging of the cargo was carried out.
He stated that surveillance was mounted at the warehouse and in the house of Ennin, indicating that on June 2, 2015 the accused was lured from his hideout to the warehouse and he was arrested.
The prosecution said when Ennin’s warehouse was searched, a number of cardboards with the label, ‘Fresh Yam Products of Ghana,’ jute sacks and plain polythene material which were used in packaging the compressed cannabis were found in the boxes of yam.
Upon interrogation, Ennin mentioned one Jay as the owner of the substance.
Source: Daily Guide
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|