Kumasi 'Killers' Storm Court
FOR THE third consecutive time, the three suspected persons who allegedly murdered one Kwabena Boadu Mensah, also known as 'Paapa', at Adwankwaame in the Atwima Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti Region, have been remanded into prison custody by a Kumasi High Court.
Making their third appearance at the court, presided over by Justice Jacob Boon on Wednesday, the alleged killers, Nana Kwaku Nsiah, the Bantama Baamuhene and Gyaasehene of Adwankwaame, Baffour and Kwadwo Gyasi, were remanded to re-appear on Wednesday February 24, 2010.
Justice Boon remanded the suspected killers for another two weeks because the prosecution, which is led by the state attorney, William Kpobi, informed the court that investigations were still ongoing.
Explaining further, Mr. Kpobi pleaded with the court to remand the suspects to enable the prosecution investigate the case further.
Taking his turn to respond to the plea of the prosecution, counsel for the suspects, lawyer Joseph Kofi Yeboah, indicated that he had no objection to the request of the prosecution.
The Accra-based legal practitioner however stated that had it not been for the request, he would have prayed the court to grant bail to his clients.
Due to the outright endorsement, Justice Boon remanded the suspects into prison custody to re-appear on February 24, 2010.
After Justice Boon made his pronouncement, lawyer Yeboah pleaded with him to correct certain impressions which, according to him, were not in the best interest of his clients.
Mr. Yeboah expressed concerns about the manner in which family members and sympathizers of the deceased had portrayed his clients as killers, explaining that “they have not been proven guilty by the court.”
He expressed discontentment about the circulation of calendars and other printed leaflets that were embossed with the pictures of his clients, noting that the family of the deceased had portrayed his clients as killers.
Lawyer Yeboah emphasized that the widely-circulated calendars and printed leaflets were prejudicial, causing an irreparable damage to the family of his clients.
He entreated the family and sympathizers of the deceased to appreciate the fact that his clients were only suspects and that they have not been proven guilty by any competent court of jurisdiction.
Still claiming that his clients had nothing to do with the alleged murder of the deceased, lawyer Yeboah insisted that none of his clients was in town when the incident happened.
Obviously not happy about the circulated calendars and printed leaflets, Lawyer Yeboah prayed the court to ban the circulation of the materials to avert further injuries to his clients and their families.
After listening attentively to the submissions of Mr. Yeaboah, Justice Boon banned the circulation of the materials, adding that anybody caught distributing them would be dealt with ruthlessly.
Before announcing the ban on the circulation of the materials, Justice Boon pointed out that he was shocked when at the last sitting, he saw people displaying the materials at the court premises.
As usual, there was a lot of tension at the premises of High Court Two, as family members and sympathizers of the deceased besieged the court to witness the proceedings.
As it happened during the second appearance of the suspected killers in court, family members and sympathizers of the deceased stormed the court in their assorted mourning cloths and chanted war songs.
Security personnel detailed to maintain law and order at the court last two weeks had a hectic time stopping the crowd from forcing their way into the court room.
The tension at the court premises exploded when the taxi cab, which was transporting the suspected killers, entered the premises, as the incensed family members tried to attack them in the taxi.
Security personnel accompanying the alleged killers had to escort them quickly to the court room to avoid a possible attack.
Due to the rising tension, the security personnel, after the brief court session, whisked them into a private car of one of the officers to escape the irate crowd.
The suspected killers, who were arrested on Friday, January 15, 2010 and arraigned before court on Monday, January 18 2010, are facing provisional charges of murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
It would be recalled that on December 18, 2009, one Kwabena Boadu Mensah was allegedly shot at Adankwaame by four residents of the town, which included the son of the Baamuhene Gyaasehene of Adankwaame.
The shooting incident was said to have occurred a day after the senior brother of the deceased, one Linsford Owuo, who is also known as 'Cedi,' had violently attacked Nana Kwaku Nsiah, the Baamuhene Gyaasehene.
Not pleased with the unprovoked violent attack on Nana Kwaku Nsiah, the four persons, including one Kwadwo Nsiah and his close associates, allegedly shot the deceased.
After shooting the deceased, the suspected killers allegedly fled the town, but were later arrested by the police and arraigned before court.
From Morgan Owusu, Kumasi