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Court grants alleged cocaine businessmen bail

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LawAn Accra circuit court, presided over by Mr Francis Obiri, on Monday granted Alexandra Kofi Baah, and Shahad Iddrisu, both businessmen, bail in the sum of GH¢50,000 with three sureties.

The accused persons, charged with conspiracy to commit crime and prohibited business relating to narcotics, pleaded not guilty, and would re-appear on Friday, April 30.

Initially, Ms Rebecca K. Ajalo, a Senior State Attorney, prayed the court to throw out the application for bail filed by Ellis Owusu–Fordwouh on March 31, 2015, arguing that the court was not the right forum.

She said the court did not have the jurisdiction to hear the application before it.

Mr Obiri, in his ruling said the facts do not support the charges and that even if the charges were non-bailable the persons could be granted bail since the facts don’t support the charges.

He said the rights and liberty of the individuals appeared to be important when it comes to bail application in regards to human rights.

The judge said “I don’t think the State Attorneys are been paid by the tax payer to victimize them.”

He said the issue of the state prosecution ‘singing the song the offence is non-bailable’ needed not to be considered in all matters.

At the last two adjournments, the court was informed that the prosecutor, investigator and an official from BNI had travelled to Bolivia to investigate the case but it turned out to be untrue.

Presenting the facts, the prosecution said some time last year, Baah went to visit a friend in Tema where he met Iddrisu, who introduced him to a businessman, a dealer in several products.

She said when Iddrisu got to know that Baah could speak Spanish fluently, he required his assistance to travel with him to Brazil to do business.

She said Iddrisu wanted Baah as an interpreter, where Baah told him that he has a friend in Bolivia and that he would introduce him (Iddrisu) to him, so they could do business.

“Baah told Iddrisu that his friend, who lives in Bolivia does business in organic fertilizer production, in which Iddrisu became delighted, and expressed interest to travel to Bolivia,” She added.

She said the accused person then travelled to Bolivia to meet the businessman and after their business transactions, they returned to Ghana.

On March 4, this year, the Bolivian authorities arrested the Bolivian businessman, his nephew and the nephew’s wife and one Ednenis Rivero ROCO, in a premise where about 5,880 kilogrammes of cocaine concealed in 840 sacks of fertilizer was seized.

Investigations so far indicated that the consignment was bound to be shipped to Burkina Faso and was to have been received by the accused persons and others yet to be apprehended.

Source: GNA

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