Josephine Panyin Mensah, 28, the alleged ‘pregnant’ and ‘kidnapped’ woman is still in the Takoradi Central Police cells, in the Western Region, because she could not fulfill her bail conditions.
A Takoradi Circuit Court, presided over by Justice Michael Cudjoe Ampadu, on Monday, granted JosephineGH¢50, 000 bail with two sureties, one to be justified.
She is expected to reappear in court on Thursday, October 14, 2021.
Josephine pleaded not guilty to charges of deceit of public officer and publication of false news intended to cause fear and panic. There were indications from counsel, Fiifi Buckman that, his client would satisfy the bail conditions, yesterday, but at time of going to the press, accused was in police custody. The accused, was represented by five lawyers on ‘pro bono’ service, with Mr Buckman, as the lead counsel.
The defence counsel prayed the court to grant accused bail and argued that Josephine’s detention was an affront on her rights. Mr Buckman said:”You cannot continue to detain her without recourse to the law and due process…we don’t even know the circumstances under which she spoke or made the confession.
“Nobody knows the truth…we will like to access her for evidence…we cannot be carried by sentiment, but, follow the law.” Responding, Superintendent (Sup) Emmanuel Basintele, told the court that accused did not make the confessions under duress.
The court heard that Josephine made confessions to medical personnel in the presence of her mother, at the Effia Nkwanta Regional Hospital, where she was undergoing treatment.
Sup Basintele, who is also Head of Legal Affairs of the Police,said Josephine was informed of her constitutional rights to have a counsel. Prosecution said police investigations suggested that the number used by the supposed kidnappers were registered in the name of accused.
Sup Basintele disclosed that accused visited the Takoradi Hospital on September 11, 2020, with complaints of lower abdominal pains, which was treated, and that, subsequent visits showed no records of antenatal care.
After listening to the arguments, the court granted bail to accused to enable her rest and recover from trauma. The court asked Josephine’s lawyers to help in the proper preparation of their client so that she can reappear in court.
Josephine, who allegedly went missing in Takoradi, has been arrested and detained for further investigations. According to police, Josephine, after grilling, confessed that her pregnancy and kidnap story was a hoax.
Josephine’s mother, Agnes Essel, and her husband, Michael Simons, a mobile phone operator, who were earlier apprehended for conspiracy, have been granted bail, because they were not aware of Josephine’s alleged faking of pregnancy.
“The suspect, Josephine, has confessed to the police during further investigations that she was neither pregnant nor kidnapped,” police source said, and assured that the public would be updated on the case.
This was after a second medical examination at the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital, where a team of specialist obstetric gynaecologists, discounted her claim of pregnancy and handed her over to the police for interrogation.
Source: The Ghanaian Times
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