17.09.2005 Crime & Punishment

Chainsaw operators assault forest guard

17.09.2005 LISTEN

Akim Oda, Sept. 17, GNA - A gang of illegal chainsaw operators led by Kwesi Fosu brutally assaulted a forest guard, Mr Joseph Adu while patrolling the Birim Forest Reserve at Akim Apoli on Friday. Fosu was arrested while his two accomplices, Kwame Ketewa and one identified only as Brother, are on the run.

Briefing the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at Akim Oda, the District Manager of the Forest Services Division (FSD), Mr Thomas Okyere said while the victim, Mr Adu and his colleague, Miss Florence Amponsah, were on patrol duties in the reserve they came upon a quantity of sawn lumber parked and they decided that Miss Amponsah was to go to report to the office at Akim Oda while Mr Adu stayed behind to keep watch over the lumber.

Mr Okyere said a few minutes later, Fosu and the two accomplices arrived there on a motorcycle and confronted Mr Adu as to what he was doing in the reserve and before he could utter a word, the suspects pounced on him and assaulted him till he fell unconscious. He said when a combined team of police and forest guards rushed to the scene, the chainsaw operators, on seeing them, fled leaving behind their motorbike. The District Forestry Manager said the chainsaw operators, however, managed to cart away a greater quantity of the sawn lumber before the team got to the scene.

While appealing to the police to expedite action on the case, Mr Okyere also appealed to chiefs and opinion leaders in the area to advise the people against assaulting forest guards performing their official duties. 17 Sept. 05

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