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28.10.2005 Crime & Punishment

Police intensifies operations on armed robbers

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Accra, Oct.28, GNA - The Greater Accra Regional Police administration on Friday said it would deal with spiritual leaders and landlords who assisted armed robbers in their operations.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Mr Jonathan Yakubu of the Greater Accra Regional Police Command who gave the warning also cautioned hoteliers to be aware of their customers with suspicious characters.

He said landlords found conniving with persons engaged in criminal activities would face the full rigours of the law, and appealed to them to report tenants including foreigners with suspicious movement to the police.

"Landlords must also see to it that their tenants engage in genuine business," He added.

ACP Yakubu said the police had declared war on armed robbery adding "we are going to make the ground very hot for armed robbers and asked foreigners in Ghana to transact their business without fear and seek police protection at all times."

In an interview with the GNA in Accra, ACP Yakubu said Police Intelligence reports showed that some nationals from neighbouring countries realised that Ghana was a haven where they could engage in criminal activities because most of the countries within the Sub-Region had amended their laws and the criminals found it difficult to operate. ACP Yakubu however, assured the public that the security agencies had stepped up operations in protecting lives and property adding "The police embarked on a swoop last Sunday in its bid to smoke out criminals within the Accra Metropolis."

He said 51 people were arrested during the swoop in hotels at Dansoman, Osu, Kotobabi and with the assistance of the Ghana Immigration Service, 31 of them were found to have no requisite resident permits. They were 29 Nigerians including 16 women, a Liberian and a British who have been remanded in police custody after their first appearance in court.

"We have intensified foot and mobile patrols systems as well as expand our intelligence network in our bid to smoke out all undesirable persons," ACP Yakubu stressed. This, he said, could be achieved through public support and offering of vital information to the police on activities of persons with suspicious characters.

ACP Yakubu regretted that some foreign nationals who entered Ghana through unapproved routes, were engaged in robbery, prostitution, and fraud.

According to ACP Yakubu, some of these nationals had no permanent place to stay and moved from one hotel to the other in Accra, Tema and Aflao adding, "Most of these people were arrested in various hotels and some hideouts."

He said one out of four suspected armed robbers who claimed to be Nigerians confessed that he came to trade in Ghana but was involved in robberies at East Legon, Ashalley Botwe, Madina and its environs. He said "Landlords found conniving with persons engaged in criminal activities would face the full rigors of the law, therefore, you should report tenants including foreigners with suspicious movement to the police."