jailed

TWO MEN who were part of a gang that attacked a National Lotto writer at Abeka Lapaz and robbed him of his daily sales have been sentenced by an Accra Circuit Court to 20 years each.

The two, Abdul Razak Mustapha, driver and Francis Ampofo, cobbler, and their accomplices who are on the run, attacked the complainant, Agbesi Kwadwo, with offensive weapons and made away with GH?2,900.

The attack, according to the prosecutor, DSP Patrick Mokeh, was as a result of the complainant?s alleged refusal to pay Mustapha an amount of GH?300 being his winning bonus.

The court presided over by Francis Obiri found the two guilty of conspiracy to commit crime and robbery after observing that the prosecution, through their witnesses, had given detailed evidence that linked the two to the offence.

Following a plea of mitigation put in by their lawyer, the court sentenced them to 15 and 20 years on the charges respectively. However, the sentences were to run concurrently. The trial judge said he dealt leniently with them because they were first time offenders.

The facts of the case as presented by the prosecutor are that the complainant, Agbesi Kwadwo, is a National Weekly Lotto writer near the lorry station at Abeka Lapaz, while the convicts reside at Israel, Alhaji.

On June 18, 2011 at about 7:00pm, the complainant, according to the prosecutor, was preparing to close when his boss came to him to collect the daily sales.

A few minutes later, the two accused persons and the three others at large, armed with cutlasses, knives, broken bottles and other offensive weapons, suddenly emerged from nowhere and attacked him.

They ordered him to quickly hand over the daily sales of GH?2,900 to them.

When he remained reluctant, they threatened to stab and butcher him. Fearing for his life, he subsequently handed over the money to them and they bolted with it.

Thereafter, the accused persons went into hiding until August 18, 2011 when the complainant had information that they were hiding at Israel. With the assistance of a team, they were arrested.

Upon interrogation, Abdul Razak Mustapha and Francis Ampofo denied the offences.

However, Mustapha stated that a week prior to the incident, he won lotto to the tune of GH?300 from a certain lotto writer who renders daily accounts to the complainant.

The prosecutor, DSP Mokeh said Mustapha claimed that when he asked for his winning ticket, the said writer told him he had handed over the ticket to the complainant, hence the attack.

He however failed to identify the said lotto writer to the police to assist with investigations.

By Mary Anane

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