THREE FARMERS and a student have been hauled before an Accra Circuit Court for their involvement in a riot which led to the destruction of property worth millions of cedis and also injuring a number of people including a police officer.
According to the Police, they stripped one of their victims, Isaac Addo naked and made him walk through the streets of Bortianor, a suburb of Accra, while they followed him and inflicted multiple cutlass wounds on him.
Police reinforcement had to be called in for the accused persons to be arrested. The injured, including a Police officer were rushed to the hospital for treatment. According to prosecution, but for the prompt intervention of the police something bloodier could have occurred.
The victims included Henry Cornelius, Teiko Tagoe, Robert Kudjoe and Roland Tetteh among others.
The accused persons, Amankwanor Opeeley, Addo Allotey, Joseph Tetteh, all farmers and Michael Quartey, a student, were charged with two counts of conspiracy and rioting with weapons and 12 counts of causing harm.
They pleaded not guilty to the charges and were granted ¢500million bail each with a surety to reappear on December 17, 2007.
The prosecutor, ASP E.Y Frimpong told the court that the complainant is a contractor and a director of Alrotech Company Limited in Accra and lived at Mamprobi, while the accused persons lived at Bortianor, a suburb of Accra.
Alrotech Company Limited, in 1997 lawfully acquired land at Dunkuna, from the Nii Akwei Aku family of Bortianor.
According to the prosecutor, the directors of the company sold portions of their land to some individual developers but a certain Nii Ogbamey Ankonam I and others claimed they were the owners of the land and therefore filed a suit against the company.
Due to frequent attacks on the developers by subjects of Nii Ogbamey, the individual developers took Alrotech to court and on June 20, 2005, the presiding judge, Justice G.A. Aryeetey ruled that the company should ensure the individual developers have free access to their lands.
Following the ruling, the complainant sought protection from the Police to enable the developers work on their plots.
However on April 5, 2007 at about 10am, while the complainant and others were at the site, the accused persons and others, now at large, armed with clubs, cutlasses and other dangerous weapons attacked and beat them mercilessly, injuring them in the process.
The accused persons as well caused damage to items including survey instruments valued at ¢65million, a Nissan Pickup with registration No. GW 5223W valued at ¢90million, an Opel Kadett Saloon car with registration No. WR 2345 Q valued at ¢35million, the windscreen of a police vehicle with registration No GP 1271 and other property, all totaling ¢219.9million.
By Mary Anane