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03.05.2007 General News

77 parcels were cocaine – detective

77 parcels were cocaine – detective

Detective Inspector Charles Adaba has said the boxes carted by Sheriff Asem Dakem, the prime suspect in the missing 77 parcels of drugs on board the MV Benjamin vessel, contained cocaine.

Detective Inspector Adaba denied that they were mere cartons saying Sergeant Samuel Amoah, now at large, confirmed the substance in his statements made to the Police.

He was answering questions under cross-examination by Mr Musah Ahmed, Defence counsel for two out of three policemen being tried for corruption at an Accra Fast Track High Court.

The three are General Sergeant David Nyarko, Detective Lance Corporal Dwamena Yabson and General Lance Corporal Peter Bondorin.

Nyarko, Yabson and Bondorin are being held on charges of prohibited business and corruption by public officer. They have pleaded not guilty.

A fourth policeman, Detective Sergeant Samuel Amoah, is on the run. He jumped bail after an Accra Regional Tribunal granted bail and his accomplices bail.

The three policemen are alleged to have allowed Asem Dake, alias Sheriff, to cart 75 parcels of cocaine from MV Benjamin into two canoes at Kpone, near Tema.

Detective Inspector Adaba said Sheriff also confirmed to Sergeant Amoah that the drug was cocaine. Witness said investigations revealed that the accused took money from Sheriff.

According to him, it was Sergeant Amoah who shared the money to the rest of the accused persons.

When counsel demanded to know the whereabouts of the Sergeant Amoah, the investigator said he ran away from the Police station when they were granted bail by a court.

He, however, admitted that it was Sergeant Amoah who organised the arrest of Sheriff.

Detective Inspector Adaba denied that the police planted a parcel of cocaine that was found on board the vessel. The investigator admitted that two canoes that were used in carting the consignment had not been traced.

The case of the prosecution is that in the earlier hours of April 26, this year MV Benjamin arrived on the high seas of Tema.

The vessel was carrying 77 parcels of cocaine imported by one Sheriff Asem Dake. Soon after the vessel arrived, the parcels of cocaine were offloaded unto two canoes, which sailed to Kpone Beach, near Tema.

Some fishermen who spotted the canoes became suspicious and called the owner of the canoes.

The owner of the canoes and others informed Sergeant Amoah who was stationed at Tema Newtown. He in turn mobilized the other accused persons and they proceeded to Kpone Beach.

At the beach, the accused persons looked on until Asem Dake offloaded the drugs into a four-wheel vehicle.

The accused persons then followed the vehicle to Tema where Dake gave them some money and they failed to arrest him.

Hearing continues on May 9.

Source: GNA