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14.03.2005 Crime & Punishment

Police and robbers in fire fight

By Chronicle

Koforidua (Chronicle) -- Armed robbers who could not contain police pressure in Accra and decided to carry their deadly activity in Suhum and New Juaben in the Eastern Region, have been arrested by the police. Before their arrest at the Suhum Roundabout, heading towards Accra, they had exchanged fire with the police, who killed one person, and arrested two others, while the rest managed to escape, with bullet wounds.

Briefing The Chronicle after the arrest at the Eastern Regional police head quarters, Koforidua, the regional crime officer, Chief Superintendent Richmond Boi -Bi-Boye, said after the arrest of Ataa Ayi and his gang, they received reports of the presence of armed robbers in the New Juaben municipality.

He said on March 1, this year, there were some robberies on the outskirts of Koforidua, precisely Adweso, Monrovia, Atekyem, Kwakyea, Okorase and other places, where five armed robberies were recorded.

The one which happened at Atekyem involved a Goil filling station manager, from whom the robbers took an amount of ¢420 million.

According to the Regional Crime Officer, the robbers went from there to Monrovia, attacked some people and followed it up to Kwakyea and Adweso where the last two robberies occured.

He said the police noticed that the modus operandi adopted by the robbers was the same, so they upgraded their intelligence system by using the CID.

He hinted that fron this observation, they started to conduct surveillance on some of the people the police believed might be the brains behind the robberies.

It was revealed that there was a man called Kwaku Reuben (alias Mogya), who was once jailed for robbery.

The arrest of Kwaku Reuben led to the arrest of Twum Ampofo, who had previously worked with the Goil filling station manager, who was robbed in the evening of March 10.

The crime officer hinted that while Twum Ampofo was being interrogated, he received a telephone call from a group of people believed to be part of the armed gang, who said they were waiting for him at Suhum to join them.

He said, just after the suspects had put off their phone, another call came in from the same suspects who said they had had reports that he (Twum) had been arrested but he told them on phone that the voice that talked to them was his voice.

Chief Superintendent Richmond Boi -Bi-Boye, disclosed that they quickly informed the CID to go and quickly arrest the suspects at Suhum. They had described their operation car as Golf with registration number GT8053G.

“When we got to the roundabout at Suhum, heading towards Accra, we started searching for the car but took notice of a Nissan Sunny parked beside a fitting shop 200 meters away from the roundabout with the same number.

“When we decided to effect their arrest, they attempted to escape amidst firing to which we responded. Some managed to escape with bullet wounds,” he disclosed.

According to him, when they searched the vehicle, it was found out that one of the gangsters, yet to be identified, had died from bullet wounds.

The police conducted a further search in the vehicle and found 16 cartridges, three pistols, two locally manufactured and the third foreign made, which were later displayed to The Chronicle.

Chief Superintendent Boi-Bi-Boye, stated that the arrested suspects were facing interrogation and believed they would be able to find the rest.

As to whether the arrested gangsters could be traced to Ataa Ayi and Mpata, the regional crime officer said he believed the gang had a link with other gangs in Accra, as Twum Ampofo and Kwaku Reuben had all confessed.

According to the peace officer, Twum Ampofo and Kwaku Reuben had mentioned one man called Onua a.k.a Playboy, who resides in Dome, a subub of Accra, as their gang leader.

Confessing further, Twum Ampofo said he was part of the gang that struck at Suhum and Koforidua and the car they used for operation, now impounded by police, belonged to their leader, 'Playboy.'

The regional crime officer assured the residents that the police service would do everything to bring about sanity and the safety of their lives.

Also, he thanked the residents for all the necessary information they provided them, which helped the police in rounding up the suspected armed robbers.

Chief Superintendent Boi-Bi-Boye, requested that the people continued to provide the police with more information that would lead them to arrest suspected armed gangs and robbers and make the Eastern Region a safe heaven.

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