Man gets 7 years for attempting to smuggle cocoa beans


The Odumase Krobo Circuit Court has sentenced one Issifu Nyandi to seven years imprisonment for attempting to smuggle bags of cocoa beans from Ghana to neighbouring Togo.

CourtThe court presided over by Justice Kwesi Apiatse Abaiddu found the convict guilty of the offence on his plea.

The convict was arrested with the cocoa beans on Wednesday, April 24, by the Anti-Cocoa Smuggling Taskforce, while on board a Ho-bound Ford Transit Bus to transport them to the Republic of Togo.

According to the facts of the case, the Anti-Cocoa Smuggling Taskforce, upon a tip-off, intercepted the said bus around 1700 hours and upon thorough search, six bags of cocoa beans, concealed in poly sacks, were subsequently retrieved.

Upon interrogation, the convict claimed ownership of the contrabands.

The prosecution said the convict bought the cocoa beans from Koforidua in the Eastern Region and transported them to Tudu in Accra to cart them to the Republic of Togo to sell.

However, upon tip-off, the Taskforce swiftly arrested him whilst on board the bus and subsequently handed him over to the Akosombo Police on the same day.

Upon further investigations, Issifu was arraigned at the Odumase Krobo Circuit and charged with offences of purchase of Cocoa without authority contrary to S4 of Ghana Cocoa Board Act, 1984 (PNDCL81), Attempting to smuggle cocoa beans contrary to S317 (i) of the Criminal and Other Offences Act 1960 (Act29) and Attempting to export cocoa beans which have not been inspected, graded and sealed by an Inspector of cocoa, contrary to S 3 of Cocoa Industry Regulations Act, 1968(NLCD278).

According to the Laws of Ghana, the penalty under S4 of PNDCL 81 is a custodial sentence of between five and ten years without an option of a fine.

The convict, therefore, pleaded guilty to the offences and was subsequently convicted on his own plea.

Two earlier convictions were recorded by the same court last week, highlighting the increasing spate of incidents of cocoa smuggling in the country in recent times.



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