Pastor and two suspected armed robbers remanded
The Tarkwa Circuit Court has remanded three suspected criminals into prison custody for conspiracy to commit crime, possession of firearms without lawful authority and attempting to commit crime.
They are Atongo Samuel, 22, illegal miner, Kofi Abanga, 24, farmer, and Twumasi Isaac, a 30-year-old pastor.
They pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
Prosecuting, Detective Inspector Celement Amoah, told the court, presided over by Mr Emmanuel Bart-Plange Brew, that Atongo is a nephew to Abanga and both reside at Abusam village, near Enchi-Kwahu while Twumasi is the founder and head pastor of Blessing of Christ Ministry church based at Sewum in the same vicinity.
He said on April 8 this year, around 1830 hrs, the accused persons together with Emmanuel Kanton now deceased and Andrews Bomeh, Adu Peter and Joe who are on the run met and conspired to rob some Chinese gold miners operating at the outskirts of Gyesikrom village, near Enchi Kwahu.
The Prosecutor said based on the agreement the accused persons armed themselves with one pump action gun, two locally manufactured pistols, machetes and clubs, laid ambushed in a cocoa farm close to the mining site.
He said at about 2000 hrs Chief Inspector, Kenneth Gamfi of Enchi Divisional police headquarters led a police night patrol team to the spot.
He said the accused persons on seeing the Police vehicle, thought they were the Chinese gold miners, quickly moved from their hide out and attacked them.
He said the deceased who was then handling the pump action gun, shot at the windscreen of the police vehicle with the aim of killing those occupying the front seats.
The patrol team also returned fire and in the process Kanton and Atongo sustained gunshot wounds on their right ribs, both arms, and left cheek.
He said the accused persons who then realized they were in danger took to their heels.
He said around 2200 hrs police reinforcement team led by the district crime officer, Assistant Superintendent of Police Mr Ebenezer Anim Ofori visited the scene and found one pump action gun loaded with live cartridges with blood stains on the gun.
The prosecution said blood stains were seen on the ground and on some leaves in a nearby cocoa farm.
Inspector Amoah said on April 10, around 0800 hrs, the body of Kanton was found lying 150 meters away from where the incident happened with live cartridges on him.
He said Atongo, who was injured went to Bonfano to meet Twumasi, their alleged spiritual father, who treated him with a herbal medication.
Detective Amoah said the Police later had information about Atongo and Twumasi and with the assistance of personnel from the Ghana Revenue Authority, Custom Division service and members of the neighborhood watch committee in the area the accused persons were arrested.
He said when a search was conducted in the room of Twumasi, live cartridges, red candles, bottles of soda water and anointing oil were found.
Detective Amoah said the accused persons admitted the offense in their respective caution statements and mentioned Bomeh, Adu and Joe as their accomplices.
He said the police were making tireless efforts to arrest the suspects at large.