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14.09.2004 Crime & Punishment

Court to deliver judgement in 588.33 kilogrammes cocaine on October 27

By GNA

Accra Sept. 14, GNA - An Accra High Court would on Wednesday, October 27, deliver its verdict on six persons allegedly involved in smuggling 588.33 kilogrammes of cocaine into the country. The court, presided over by Mr Justice F. Kusi Appiah, a Court of Appeal Judge sitting as additional High Court judge gave the date after prosecution and defence had filed their addresses to the court. Prosecuting, Mr Anthony Gyambiby, Chief State Attorney called 12 witnesses during the nine-month trial.

The accused persons: Kevin Gorman, 59, an American, Mohammed Ibrahim Kamil, Ghanaian; John David Logan, 43, Frank Lavelrick 43, Alan Hodson 45, all British and 45-year-old Sven Herb, a German have been charged with conspiracy and possessing 588.33 kilogrammes of cocaine without lawful authority. Gorman, Lavelrick and Hodson were additionally charged for importing narcotic drugs without a license. Gorman was further charged for using his property for narcotic offence.

The accused persons, who have been on remand through out the trial, have pleaded not guilty to the charges and are expected to face jail terms ranging between 10 to 15 years if found guilty. The case of the prosecution was that Gorman is a Director Shareholder and Operations Manager of a shipping company called Tuna To-Go Limited based in Tema. On January 7, the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) and the Drug Enforcement Unit (DLEU) of the Police Service raided the residence of Gorman and discovered bales and parcels of whitish substances suspected to be cocaine concealed in a specially constructed hole or compartment in a wall in the corridor upstairs behind a large dressing mirror. The Chief State Attorney said Gorman with Logan, Lavelrick and Hodgson who were living in the house with him (Gorman) at the time, were confronted with the substance. Gorman said the bales and parcels were brought there for safe keeping by one Yakuba for a fee of 50,000 dollars. The rest of the suspects, including Herb who arrived later denied knowledge of the substances.

Investigations indicate that on December 31, last year, Kamil delivered the bales of boxes of suspected drugs in Gorman's house. Herb who earlier visited Gorman assisted him and Kamil to off load boxes. Examination by the Ghana Standard Board has revealed that the whitish substances were cocaine.

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