Aisha ‘Sister’ Arrested For Timber ‘Galamsey’

A 43-year-old Chinese woman has been arrested by the Northern Regional Police Command for allegedly possessing large quantities of rosewood illegally. 

Many people overexploit rosewood in the wild despite a 2010 moratorium on trade and illegal logging which continues in the country on a large scale.

In Ghana, the Ministry of lands and Natural Resources has banned the harvest of rosewood in line with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).

DAILY GUIDE gathered that Helen Huang was arrested by police personnel at a barrier at Vittin, a suburb of Tamale. 

Another Chinese, Aisha Huang, who was deported last year, also engaged in widespread illegal mining for many years in the country until her arrest.

The two share similar surname and people are uncertain whether they are related.

According to Supt. Otuo Acheampong, Northern Region Crime Officer, the suspect was arrested with two trucks carrying four containers of rosewood. 

Upon her arrest, Helen Huang allegedly claimed ownership of the rosewood, adding that she had the right documents to cover the rosewood but failed to produce the documents. 

The suspect was transporting the rosewood through the Northern Region to Tema in the Greater Accra Region. 

There was drama at the Regional Police Command when Helen Huang accused the police at the barrier of demanding bribe from her to allow safe passage. 

According to her, she was arrested because she refused to pay bribe demanded by the police and not because she does not have the right documents. 

Responding to the allegations against the police, the Public Relations Officer (PRO), DSP Mohammed Yussif Tanko, said investigations would be conducted to establish the truth. He gave an assurance that the police administration would act decisively if the allegations were found to be true.

He added that the command had also issued a direct order at all checkpoints and barriers to arrest anybody or truck transporting rosewood.

DSP Tanko, however, commended his men for arresting the suspect.