Kwame Ofosu, a Ghanaian citizen living in Spain, has been sentenced to six months imprisonment for bribery of a public officer and also fined for carrying cocaine.
Ofosu was jailed, as well as fined 1,000 penalty units (GH¢12,000) in default of which he would serve three years imprisonment by an Accra Criminal Court, presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo on Tuesday, this week.
The court found Ofosu guilty on seven different counts -possession of narcotic drugs, attempt to export narcotic drugs, bribery of public officer and engaging in criminal conspiracy to commit an offence.
Apart from bribery of public officer, the court fined him 1,000 penalty units on each of the other six counts and in default he would serve three years.
This brings the total fine to 6,000 penalty units, which he must pay the monetary value or serve 18 years should he default. The counts are to run concurrently.
Prior to the pronouncement of his sentence, Ofosu’s counsel, Paul AssibiAbariga, pleaded with the court to tamper justice with mercy in exercising its discretion to enable convict to sin no more.
He said one of the reasons for canvassing this is that even though the case appeared for about a year, so many factors came in the course of the trial
Abariga also prayed the court to consider Ofosu’s remorsefulness anytime he appeared before it and that he is also a family man with children still in school.
He added that the court should consider voluntarily confession to the Narcotic Control Commission (NACOC) officers and also that he is a first time offender.
The counsel, therefore, prayed for minimal punishment so that he can come back early enough to reconcile with his family.
The state prosecutor, Watkins Adamah, stated that having looking at the circumstances that led to his arrest and outright voluntary support or assistance towards investigation, he would not oppose the prayer by the counsel.
According to the prosecutor, Watkins Adamah, Kwame Ofosu, 1st accused (A1), is a Ghanaian and a resident of Spain, while Haruna Moro (A2) is a resident of Teshie, in Accra.
Mr Adamah said on September 15, 2021, Ofosu arrived at the Kotoka International Airport to board a Tap Portugal flight and during departure formalities, he was stopped for profiling by officers of Narcotic Control Commission.
He added that in the course of the profiling, Ofosu voluntarily confessed to the officers that he has ingested narcotic drugs, which were given to him by Olu and Abu, currently at large.
The convict thus told the officers that he met Olu and Abu through one Felix Busia, also at large, who introduced him to the narcotic trade.
Ofosu was then charged to deliver the narcotic drugs to Olu’s brother in Spain for a fee of €2,000.00.
The first accused paid an amount of €300 to the officers so that they would release him to continue with his journey.
Unfortunately, the convict was compelled to call Olu to tell him that the NACOC officers were further demanding $1,000.00 before they will release him.
The court was told that the officers had the convict place the phone call on loud speaker, and Olu was allegedly heard saying that he will send the money to his brother and described the clothes his said brother would be wearing and where they should meet at the airport.
Just as described by Olu, Moro arrived at the airport about 10 minutes later and met with the officers of NACOC.
He handed an amount of GH¢6,000 to the officers as cedi equivalent of the US$1,000.00 demanded for Ofosu to be released.
Moro was arrested when he was about leaving the airport after handling over the money to the officers. Interestingly, Moro allegedly denied ever giving any money to the officers when he was arrested
Meanwhile, Ofosu was put under observation and he expelled 68 pellets containing a powdery substance, which were forwarded to the Ghana Standard Authority (GSA) for examination.
The GSA report was ready on October 11, 2021, and it was established that 40 pellets of the substance tested positive for heroin with percentage purity 20.2 while the remaining substance tested positive for cocaine with a percentage purity of 36.9.