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04.05.2005 Crime & Punishment

Juvenals continue to stay in police cells

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Winneba (C/R), May 4, GNA - The continued detention of three Juvenals in police cells at Winneba and Kasoa had been a source of worry to some police officers at the two stations and some Human Right activists in Winneba.

The boys were ordered by an Awutu Beraku and Winneba magistrate's court to be sent to the Borstal Home at Kpone Tamale about five months ago, but they have since been kept in the police cells at Kasoa and Winneba.

They were convicted for stealing personal belongings. Some police officers, who spoke to the Ghana News Agency on condition of anonymity at Winneba on Tuesday said, feeding of the two children under the age of 17 had become a problem to the police officers at the Charge Office.

According to them the relatives of the children, who claimed they are orphans had refused to provide them food on regular bases, making the children to be shouting for food from police personnel on duty at the charge Office.

They said that on humanitarian grounds they were compelled by their plight to use their pocket money to feed the children, who are spending endless days at the cells.

Mr Nicholas Gasu, Winneba District Police Commander told the GNA that the Social Welfare Officer had refused to submit an official letter to accompany the children to the Home on grounds that he was not involved in the trial of the children as required by the law. Mr Joseph Acquah, the Social Welfare Officer expressed concern about the way the children were tried without the involvement of his office.

He said that the law required that any trial involving a Juvenal should involve his office, who would officer technical advice on how to handle the situation.

Mr Acquah said that, he "would not write a letter to cover a case he has no knowledge about".

Meanwhile, the Awutu-Effutu-Senya District Director of the CHRAG, Mr Richmond Mensah had renewed his appeal to the Ghana Legal Board to intervene in the matter to get the children released to alleviate their suffering.

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