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19.11.2004 Crime & Punishment

7 Arrested over "Wee" Exports

By Graphic

Accra, Nov. 19, Graphic -- Security personnel at the Kotoka International Airport have intercepted 95 kilogrammes of cannabis meant for exportation to the United Kingdom (UK).The exporter, who has been identified only as Boamah, is on the run, while his four accomplices are in custody pending further investigations.

They are Abubakar Yakubu, Louis Badu, Richard Kofi Wurah and Edmund Fletcher. Three others who tried to smuggle various narcotic substances outside the country have also been arrested. They are Alex Kyeremanteng, a security officer of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Elizabeth Owusu Manu, a housewife based in the United States of America,and Evans Kwasi Atta, a car dealer at Avenor.

A source at the Narcotics Control Board, which disclosed this to newsmen in Accra yesterday, said with regard to the 95 kilogrammes of cannabis, Boamah had concealed the drugs in various sacks of gari which were to be exported to the UK.It said investigations had revealed that between September and October this year, Boamah, with the help of his accomplices, successfully exported three consignments of gari to the UK.

It explained that he normally used Yakubu, a butcher at the Kaneshie Market, as a front man to export the goods, with the other three assisting.The source said when the next consignment was brought for export, personnel of the Customs, Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) who were examining the goods detected the concealment of the drugs in the gari and accordingly alerted the other security agencies, leading to the interception of the goods and the subsequent arrest of the suspects.

With regard to Alex Kyeremanteng, the source said, he had parcelled cocaine in two plastic pharmacy prescription envelopes and a birthday card to be posted to a cousin in Australia. It said when the parcel was intercepted and Alex was questioned, he admitted sending the parcel but explained that it was his cousin who gave him $900 to buy the drugs.

According to the source, when Alex's home was searched, eight Ghanaian passports bearing different names with varied professions were found.On Elizabeth Manu and Atta Evans, the source said Elizabeth had swallowed 23 pellets of suspected narcotics and was about to fly to the US when she was arrested.

The source said she mentioned Atta Evans as the source of supply of the drugs and subsequently led security personnel to arrest him at his McCarthy Hills residence.

It said Atta Evans admitted having given her the drugs and explained that he bought them for $7,500.

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