Two military impostors nabbed
The Tarkwa police have arrested two men alleged to have posed as military officers and extorted money from illegal miners and some residents of Esuaso.
The two; Isaac Jackson, 21, and Isaac Kojo Biney, 28, allegedly claimed to be members of the Presidential Task Force checking illegal mining operations. They harassed their unsuspecting victims and extorted money from them.
They were arrested together with a woman, Hilda Kojo, said to be the girlfriend of Jackson. Additionally, Jackson has been accused of defiling a 15-year-old girl in the town.
At the time of their arrest, the suspects were allegedly dressed in military uniforms. Besides that, two more sets of military uniforms, GH¢120.00, a jack knife and a Takoradi Technical Institute ID card bearing the name of Jackson were retrieved from the suspects.
According to the police, Biney, alias Papa Abeka, was an employee of a private security firm in Sekondi, while Jackson, alias Ato, was said to be a civilian employee of the Western Naval Command in Sekondi.
The Tarkwa Divisional Police Commander, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Paul Ayitey, told the Daily Graphic that the suspects were allegedly assisted by two other persons, whose names were given to the police as Angu from Benso and Simon from Esuosu. Angu and Simon are currently on the run.
Mr Ayitey said the suspects were said to have not only extorted between GH¢1,000 and GH¢15,000 from the illegal miners, but also beaten them. He added that last Wednesday, the two suspects went to the assemblyman of the area in their military uniforms and introduced themselves as soldiers from the Sekondi Naval Base.
According to him, the suspects asked the assemblyman to notify them (suspects) anytime there was going to be an operation in the area to enable them to extort money from the illegal miners but when he declined their request, the two suspects angrily stormed out of his house.
He said while on their extortion and harassment expedition, the suspects met a 15-year-old girl, who had been sent from Benso to Esuosu to give money to her uncle. Upon seeing the girl, he said, Biney allegedly beat her up while Jackson defiled her.
Mr Ayitey said the conduct of the suspects compelled the elders and assemblyman to report them to the police. When Angu and Simon heard that the matter had been reported to the police, they bolted with their booty without informing Biney and Jackson.
The three suspects: Biney, Jackson and his girlfriend, were arrested by the police with the help of members of the community.
By Moses Dotsey Aklorbortu/Daily Graphic/Ghana