Alleged cocoa smuggler arrested
The Dormaa Circuit Court at Dormaa-Ahenkro has granted bail in the sum of GH¢ 20,000 with two sureties to Yaw Agyemang, a Produce Buying Company (PBC) purchasing clerk, for an alleged attempt to smuggle 70 bags of dried cocoa beans valued at GH¢10,500 to neighbouring Cote d’Ivoire on Christmas day.
Agyemang had pleaded not guilty to the charge and was ordered by the court presided over by Mr Justice Akwantey to reappear on January 21.
Chief Inspector Matthew Yeboah told the court that Agyemang lived at Kasapin in Asunafo North Municipality but purchased cocoa in parts of Dormaa Municipality for his company.
He said in September 2009, the Dormaa Municipal Assembly mounted a barrier at Kwadwomokrom, near Kasapin and set up a task force to ensure that all cocoa emanating from Dormaa Municipality were sealed.
On Friday, December 25 last year, the task force, headed by the Assembly-member for Kwadwomokrom Electoral Area, had a tip-off that a KIA truck was being loaded with cocoa bags at a PBC shed at Amponsakrom in the Dormaa Municipality and was bound for Cote d’Ivoire.
The Chief Inspector said members of the task force rushed to the shed and found the truck filled with 70 bags of dried cocoa beans.
When arrested, the driver of the truck and the shed keeper mentioned Agyemang as the owner of the cocoa.
“Yaw Agyemang upon hearing the arrest of his staff, reported to the Dormaa Police where he claimed ownership of the load,” Chief Inspector Yeboah added.
The prosecutor said Agyemang in his cautioned statement to the police insisted that he was only transferring the cocoa from Amponsakrom to another PBC cocoa shed at Bredi-Akotokrom in the Dormaa Municipality.