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08.12.2005 General News

Amoateng to be cleared -Daily Guide

By Daily Guide
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“The Daily Guide”, a private newspaper reports today that, “emerging details from the United States over the $6 million heroin haul involving a Member of the Ghanaian Parliament, Eric Amoateng suggest that the MP could be exonerated.”

The MP had pleaded innocent in the heroin deal saying he was a victim of circumstances.

In a formal letter to the Speaker of the Ghanaian parliament, Mr. Amoateng categorically denied the charges leveled against him and said, “I pray to God that in due time and soon, all the facts will come out and I would be totally exonerated.”

“Daily Guide can authoritatively say that Nii Okai Adjei who is the principal suspect, has completely exonerated the MP from any wrong-doing or offence.

Nii Okai Adjei, has thus written officially to the District Court of New York to exonerate the MP and complained that he was forced under duress to implicate the MP.”

“In his letter dated November 22 and signed by himself, Nii Okai Adjei said he was made to implicate the MP under pressure and intense force especially when a number of guns were drawn at him by special agents of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after his arrest.”

“I Nii Okai Adjei, inmate 63766, write to state and declare from my own free will, without pressure from anywhere or anybody that the initial statement I made incriminating Eric Amoateng, was all not true”, he stated in the letter.

The paper said Nii Adjei made those statements under intense pressure from gun-wielding officials of the ICE and consequently, apologized to the court for that misleading statement.

“I wish to apologise to the honourable court and the Federal Government for giving out wrong information. I also want to apologise to Eric Amoateng through the courts for incriminating and involving him in the whole mess,” the paper quotes from a letter he purportedly wrote.

Meanwhile, Amoateng is expected to be put before court alongside, Nii Okai Adjei on Monday December 12 where charges would be preferred against him (Nii Adjei).

“The court will also listen to the pleas of the two suspects especially the case of Hon. Amoateng and determine whether he is culpable or not and whether he should be granted bail or not.

ICE officials have provisionally charged the two with intentionally conspiring to distribute and possess with intent, to distribute heroin, an illegal drug in violation of Title 21, United States Code, section 841.

Mr. Amoateng had before his public letter to absolve himself from any conspiracy told a team of Ghanaian consulate-general of Ghana's office in New York that he was innocent and had purposely traveled to the United States to buy watches, in large quantities to re-sell in Ghana.

He said, he met Nii Okai Adjei, a personal; friend whom he had known for the past ten years on the same Emirates Airline.

He said on his arrival in New York on November 10, they both agreed to lodge at the Grand Union Hotel Amoateng said he had already made reservations.

He stated that the next day, he was invited by his friend to accompany him to JFK Airport, to collect his cargo after introducing a man named Gameli to him.

Hon. Amoateng explained that they went with Gameli in a rented van to collect the cargo to a storage warehouse in Staten Island.

According to Amoateng, after depositing the cargo at Staten Island they went back to the hotel where they spent the rest of the day. He said, on Saturday morning, his long-time friend invited him again, to the storage house to retrieve some ceramic vases from the cargo, for sale which Okai Adjei's business partner had directed him to do.

At the storage facility, Hon. Amoateng said his friend sought his assistance in opening some specific boxes. He said, upon opening the boxes, they saw most of the ceramic vases broken, exposing some powdery substances, which had spilled out of the broken ceramic vases.

“Hon. Amoateng then told his friend to report, or complains to the airline which shipped the goods to the US, about the incident.

Amoateng explained it was on their way out of the warehouse that a team of custom agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested them, together with the driver. He said, surprisingly the driver was later released after brief interrogation, while they were detained at the metropolitan detention centre and later brought before court on provisional charges.

He re-emphasised his position that, he was innocent and just a victim of circumstances.

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