21.04.2005 Crime & Punishment

Court frees Sherry, Agbodo, convicts Casely-Hayford

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Accra, April. 21, GNA - An Accra Fast Track Court on Thursday acquitted and discharged Mrs Hanny Sherry Ayittey, Treasurer of the 31st December Women's Movement (DWM), on three counts of corruption in the Ghana Rubber Estate Limited (GREL) divestiture case. The court also freed Mr Emmanuel Amuzu Agbodo, former Executive Secretary of the Divestiture Implementation Committee (DIC), on one count of corruption.

Acquitting Mrs Ayittey and Mr Agbodo, Mr Justice J.C. Amonoo-Monney, Appeal Court Judge who handled the case as a High Court Judge, explained that the prosecution failed to prove its case beyond any reasonable doubt against them.

However, Ralph Casely-Hayford, a businessman, was sentenced to three years imprisonment, for accepting bribe in the case. Mr Justice Amonoo-Monney found Casely-Hayford guilty on one count of bribery and convicted him accordingly. The convict was charged with accepting a 70-million-cedi bribe in connection with the divestiture of GREL.

The three were arraigned before the court on various charges of bribery and corruption on November 15, 2001. On January 30, the following year, the prosecution withdrew their charge sheet and substituted them with a new one.

On December 10, 2003 the court acquitted and discharged Mrs Dorcas Sati Ocran, a housewife and a member of the DWM who was standing trial on charges of corruption with the three, for lack of evidence.

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