The state of Ghana has failed to charge three persons picked up by security agencies for allegedly engaging in a plot to subvert the government of President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo.
The state had, on Monday, September 3, 2019, issued a statement that the three were engaged in an elaborate plot targeted at the Presidency.
But when the state brought the accused before a Kanashie District Court a day after its release, it charged them with a Conspiracy to manufacture arms and ammunition without lawful authority and possession of explosives and firearms without lawful excuse.
The three accused persons, Dr Frederick Yao Mac-Palm, Dornyah “Ezor” Kafui, a local weapon manufacturer, and Bright Allan Debrah Ofosu, also known as, BB or ADC, a freight manager, made their first appearance in court but their pleas were not taken by the court.
Government in a statement released on Monday said a joint security operation on Friday led to the retrieval of several arms, explosive devices and ammunition from locations in Accra and Kpone-Bawaleshie in Dodowa.
Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah later revealed that some serving military personnel have also been picked up in relation to the same operation.
ASP Sylvestre Asare, prosecuting on behalf of the state, asked that the accused persons be remanded into police custody to enable investigations to continue.
He pleaded that they are specifically remanded into BNI custody since the institution is the lead investigative body, assuring the court that the accused persons will be allowed to see their families and their lawyers.
Lawyers for the accused, however, opposed the application.
A member of their legal team, Victor Adawudu questioned why the plea of his clients could not be taken since it appeared the state had investigated the matter and decided to charge them.
He added as part of his argument that it was the court that had the power to determine whether to keep them in custody or not, insisting the accused persons are presumed innocent till proven guilty.
ASP Asare responded that prosecution is confused as to the position of the defence legal team. He said investigations had not been concluded hence prosecutors don’t want the pleas of the accused persons taken.
The Magistrate hearing the case, Rosemond Dodua Agyiri, said the plea ought not to be taken because some of the charges were beyond her jurisdiction.
She said she understood the need to investigate the matter but advised prosecution to consider the charges closely by the next court date.
On the subject of bail, she relied on the same reason to decline the request and rather remanded the accused persons into BNI custody.
A fourth suspect named only as Sulley is meanwhile said to be on the run