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05.08.2009 Crime & Punishment

POLICE GUN DOWN ANOTHER NOTORIOUS ARMED ROBBER…as manhunt for 4 accomplices goes on

By Issah Alhassan, Kumasi - Ghanaian Chronicle
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A 46 YEAR OLD Kumasi-based suspected notorious armed robber, Ousman Gado, has become the latest victim in a series of police-robbers encounter in recent times, after he was shot and killed in a fierce gun battle with security agents on Sunday evening on the outskirts of Akrokeri, near Obuasi.

The notorious robber, who was part of a gang of four, was reportedly on a robbery operation on the Dunkwa on-Offin road, when they were intercepted by the police, who had mounted a snap-check between Anwiankwanta and Obuasi, after they had received information through a tip off about the robbers' expedition.

Ousman Gado, together with four others accomplices who are currently on the run, defied orders by the police to stop, when they got to the barrier at around 7 p.m. last Sunday evening, and Gado, who was driving a black Mousso Ssangyong 4x4, with registration number No.GT 585 S, careened through the barrier in an attempt to hit one of the police personnel on duty.

The police/military patrol team, in their bid to foil their operation, gave the robbers a hot chase towards Obuasi, but were outrun by the robbers, who took a different route, but upon direction by neighbours, the security agents managed to catch up with Gado and his accomplices on the outskirts of Akrokeri.

Sensing danger, the occupants of the vehicle opened fire on the security personnel, hitting the driver's side door of the lead patrol vehicle, and shattering the windshield.

The patrol team, at this juncture, had no choice but to fire back at the fully-armed robbers, killing the driver of the vehicle, who was later identified as a notorious criminal who had been on the wanted list of the police since 2001.

Three of the armed robbers, whose identities were given as Rashid, Awudu Latif and another who is yet to be identified, managed to escape and are believed to be hiding somewhere along the Obuasi and Anwiankwanta road.

Two AK 47 rifles, with three magazines loaded with 48 rounds of ammunition, one single barrel shotgun, a mask, a knife and a sack were retrieved from the robbers, and it is suspected that the sack was used by the robbers to conceal the weapons anytime they embarked on operations.

Gado and his accomplices were suspected to have been involved in a number of criminal cases, including a robbery on 13th January 2006, where officials of a cocoa buying company were robbed of about GH¢50,000 at a secondary forest near Sanfo Aduam.

On 21stJanuary 2001, the deceased and his gang attacked and shot a policeman at Kruwi Nkwanta near Mampong Nsuta, and was later arrested and identified by a victim during a parade, but was later granted bail under circumstances which generated a furor between the police and the court.

Gado and another one at large, were also cited in a robbery case which occurred on 11th June this year, after they allegedly trailed their victim with a motorbike to the TUC Estate in Kumasi, where they robbed him of GH¢6,000.00, £1,000.00, a laptop, two cell phones and documents.

They reportedly abandoned the motorbike used in the operation, snatched a 207 Benz bus in an attempt to flee, but could not move the vehicle, after which they fled into a thick nearby thicket.

The latest expedition of the deceased robber and his gang occurred last Sunday when they robbed a victim of $12,000, a digital camera, mobile phone, a box containing jewelleries and perfume.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Ashanti Regional Police Commander, ACP Kwasi Mensah Duku, in a press statement yesterday, said the police patrol team had mounted an intensive search for the three accomplices.

He appealed to the general public to volunteer information on the hunted robbers, and also pleaded with all hospitals and medical facilities to report anyone who visits their facility for treatment with strange wounds.

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