A GHANAIAN STUDENT of London Metropolitan University was slapped with a 12-year jail term by an Accra Regional Tribunal for swallowing 36 pellets of cocaine.
The convict who was said to have attempted to export the drugs to London was found guilty of two counts of attempted exportation and possessing narcotic drug.
The accused person, Clifford Broni Bediako, who pleaded not guilty had told the court without representation by counsel in his defence that he did not swallow cocaine as alleged but rather diamonds, stressing that the police have tempered with his exhibit.
However, the trial judge in his ruling noted that the defence by the accused that his diamonds were taken away and replaced with cocaine was not true.
The accused in the course of his defence brought in a witness to testify on his behalf that he swallowed diamonds but the judge stated that the witness was not able to convince the court on that issue since he was not in the said house when the accused allegedly swallowed the said diamonds.
He noted that evidence in court shows that the exhibit was sealed in an envelope by the investigator in the presence of the accused after which he appended his signature, adding that a report from Ghana Standards Board on the content proved positive for cocaine.
The judge disclosed that the prosecution was able to prove their case against the accused that he had cocaine in his possession when he was arrested at the airport.
Facts in court state that on July 14, 2005, at about 8pm, the accused arrived at the Kotoka International Airport to board a KLM flight to London. Personnel from Narcotics Control on duty at the airport suspected him of carrying narcotic drugs. Bediako was then sent to 37 Military Hospital where he was subjected to an X-ray examination which revealed that he had foreign materials in his stomach.
The accused under observation expelled 36 pellets of cocaine. When he was interrogated, he indicated that he received the substance from one Kofi at Spintex, Accra to be delivered to a certain Kingsley in London for a fee of £1,300. A report from Ghana Standards Board indicated that the substance was cocaine with total net weight of 282.4077g.
By Mary Anane