Docket on Asem Darkeh sent to Attorney General for advice
The prosecution in the case of Christian Asem Darkeh, the alleged importer of the MV Benjamin Cocaine, on Wednesday, told an Accra Circuit Court that a duplicate docket on the matter had been sent to the Attorney General’s (AG) Department for advice.
Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) A.A. Annor, prosecuting, told the Court that previous prosecutions on the matter were handled by the AG’s Department, therefore, the new docket to the AG would help them reconcile the two dockets and give advice on the matter.
He prayed the court for time to complete investigations on the matter while waiting for the AG’s advice.
Mr Raymond Asawuda, who held brief for George Heward Mills, Counsel for the accused, said he was not happy with the reasons given by the prosecution because the docket should have been forwarded earlier to the AG’s Department after the investigations.
He said the prosecution was using the delay in presenting the docket to the AG as a ploy to unduly keep their client in custody.
Mr Asawuda prayed the court to admit their client to bail, saying they were prepared to meet the bail conditions to be determined by the Court.
Ms Audrey Kokuvi Tay, the trial judge, said she was not pleased with the continuous delay of the case but, subsequently, adjourned it to Wednesday, March 21.
The facts are that sometime in April 2006, intelligence report gathered indicated that a shipping vessel, MV Benjamin had been spotted on the high seas carrying about 77 parcels of cocaine heading towards Ghana’s coast.
On midnight of April 26, 2006, the said vessel docked at Kpone/Tema and discharged the cocaine which was off-loaded into a waiting vehicle and taken away.
DSP Annor said investigations led to the arrest of some suspects who were tried, convicted and sentenced to various prison terms.
He said during investigations, Darkeh’s name featured prominently as the importer and owner as well as the person who sent the MV Benjamin from Ghana and paid $150,000 to use another vessel from Guinea.
The prosecutor said the accused carted the cocaine parcels away upon arrival off the ship at Kpone.
DSP Annor said on February 2 the accused was arrested at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra upon a tip-off after being on the run since 2006.