Cop, 3 Others Arrested For Extortion, Robbery

Four persons, including a policeman and an ex-soldier, who are said to have connived to extort and rob people of their money and other belongings have been arrested by the police. The suspects — Lance Corporal Martin Agyare of the Police Mobile Force in Accra; ex-Leading Aircraftman, Iddrisu Ato; Harrison Tawiah, a driver, and Agbeko Mannah, a carpenter — are alleged to have carried out their illegal operations at wee-smoking joints and around automated teller machines (ATMs) of banks where they trailed their victims to rob them. An AK 47 and 10 rounds of ammunition belonging to the policeman were retrieved. The ex-soldier allegedly tore his military uniform when detectives closed in on the suspects at the Achimota Cargo Truck Station where they had assembled to embark on their activities. The Deputy Accra Regional Police Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Mr Christian Tetteh Yohuno, told newsmen in Accra Monday that the police had a tip-off that some persons, including a policeman and an ex-soldier, had been terrorising people at Tesano, Madina, the Institute of Professional Studies, Adentan, Airport, Dzorwulu and Achimota in the mornings and afternoons. According to him, the information given to the police was that after trailing people who withdrew money from the ATMs, the suspects often created the impression of causing the arrest of those people for some offences, with the pretext of sending them to the Police Headquarters. On the way, he said, the gang of four would collect whatever amount of money those ‘arrested’ had on them before releasing them. Mr Yohuno said at the wee-smoking dens, the gang usually arrested the dealers and created the impression of taking them to the Police Headquarters, only to stop along the way and extort money from them. He said following a tip-off in the morning of Tuesday, a team of detectives was dispatched to the Achimota Station to lay ambush there, since the place was said to be the assembling point of the gang. Mr Yohuno said having been given the registration number of the taxi which the gang used in the illegal operation, the detectives pounced on all four suspects when the taxi, with registration number GE 7537-11, was ready to take off with Agyare and Ato in uniform. He said, a victim of the gang showed up at the Accra Regional Police Command to identify the suspects. He said the victim alleged that he was attacked and GH¢1,160 and a motorbike were seized from him at the Achimota transport terminal after he had withdrawn money from the ATM at a bank. Mr Yohuno said initial investigations had established that Iddrisu was discharged from the Ghana Air Force on September 16, 2007.