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08.05.2007 Crime & Punishment

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By Ghana Palaver

Near Confrontation During Cross-Examination At Tagor Trial

Prosecution in the case of Kwabena Amaning, aka Tagor, and Alhaji Abass, who are being held for drug-related offences nearly clashed with defence over its line of cross-examination.

The prosecution was of the view that the line of cross-examination sought to attack the image of Detective Inspector Charles Adaba, one of the investigators in the case.

Ms Gertrude Aikins, Chief State Attorney, told the court: “The line of cross-examination sought to open the floodgate for the prosecution to attack the image of the accused persons as well.”

It all happened when the Court allowed Mr Gabby Okyere-Darko, one of the counsel for Tagor, to ask few a questions although they had taken their turn at previous sittings.

Mr Okyere-Darko quizzed the investigator over his gold wrist watch, which he alleged, was a gift from Mr Prince Tsibu Darko, a businessman who was discharged over drug related offence.

Counsel further quizzed Detective Adaba for extorting money from Tagor but he (Adaba) denied.

The court was of the view that defence was not being fair.

Answering questions under the cross-examination by Mr Osafo Buabeng, counsel for Alhaji Issah Abass, Detective Inspector Adaba, denied that the compact disc containing the recorded conversation during a meeting at ACP Kofi Boakye's house was an edited copy.

Detective Inspector Adaba told the court that the duration of the said recorded conversation was 62 minutes.

According to him he believed that the CD was the original because his source was genuine.

Alhaji Issah Abass, 53, and Kwabena Amaning, alias Tagor alleged self-confessed drug barons are jointly charged for conspiracy.

Tagor has additionally been charged for carrying out prohibited business relating to narcotic drugs, buying and supplying of narcotic drugs while Abass is also being held for carrying out prohibited business

relating to narcotic drugs and supplying narcotic drugs.

They have pleaded not guilty.

The court presided over by Mr Justice J. Dotse has remanded them in prison custody.

When Detective Inspector Adaba was queried about Alhaji Adda and Joe Bossy, whose names were mentioned during the meeting, he said they were on the run.

On the business of Alhai Abass, the investigator told the court that he was not aware that he supplied tyres to Government institutions although the accused had stated that in his statement to the Police.

Detective Inspector Adaba said he was also not aware that Alhaji Abass owned a vessel and had been in the fishing business for the past 15 years.

He agreed with defence counsel that those whose voices were on the CD alleged that the 76 parcels on board the MV Benjamin belonged to some Columbians.

Detective Inspector Adaba said his investigation also revealed that it was Sheriff Asem Dake who imported the 77 parcels of cocaine.

”Aljahi Abass also mentioned Sheriff as the one who imported the 77 parcels of cocaine on the CD.”

According to the investigator, Alhaji Abass stated on the CD that 77 parcels imported into country was too much for one person to “consume,” adding that, he (Abass) and Tagor were going to look for owner.

The investigator said Tagor and Abass arranged to meet over that.

When asked when he first went to see the MV Benjamin vessel, witness said it was in October last year.

He maintained that Abass and Tagor conspired to look for the missing coke on board the MV Benjamin vessel.

He denied that he was unable to conduct investigations into the matter although his predecessor, Detective Inspector Justice Oppong did not leave any handing over notes.

The case of the Prosecution is that the accused are self-confessed drug barons, who since 2004 have been actively engaged in activities of promoting and establishing various enterprises relating to narcotic drugs. --GNA