Three young men arrested by the Dormaa Ahenkro Police for attempting to rob a petrol station in the area in police uniform have been sentenced 10 years each in hard labour.
Charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit crime to wit robbery and attempted robbery, the three convicts, Evans Adoma, 19; Richmond Effah, 23 and Kwaku Addai, 19, all masons, who pleaded guilty to the offences, were convicted by the Dormaa Circuit Court last Thursday.
The gang was arrested by the police at about 9:30pm on Monday, January 28, 2013 at Tutukrom on the Dormaa-Berekum main road, fully dressed in police uniform, attempting to rob a newly opened filling station.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Brong Ahafo Regional Police Command, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Christopher Tawiah, told DAILY GUIDE that the convicts had been planning for about three months to rob the new fuel station.
He said during the planning, they decided mainly to use police uniform to conduct the operation. The gang finally made its intention known to a friend to assist it to get access to police uniform and weapon.
ASP Tawiah said the young man, whom he described as a Good Samaritan and later became the main witness in court, informed his grandpa , whom he lived with, about the gang's intention. The grandpa quickly led him to report the matter with the police and a plan was hatched to arrest the group.
The Dormaa District Police Commander, DSP Yussif Mahmud, in a plan to arrest the group, directed a police officer to feign interest in the deal and gave the officer a set of police uniform to be supplied to the group to embark on its operations.
On January 26, at about 8:30pm, when the four including the witness met, the leader of the gang, Evans Adoma, forced them to swear an oath of secrecy by invoking curses of the powerful Techiman-based deity 'Bookyerewa' to kill anyone who betrayed the rest should one be arrested in the course of the operation.
It was also discussed at their meeting that a policeman was needed to supply the group with police uniform and a weapon, which the witness readily accepted and promised to help.
On Sunday, January 27, at about 8:30pm; the policeman met with the gang and assured them of helping them to secure the police uniform and the AK 47 riffle the following day. In order to have maximum faith in him, the officer was asked by the gang to swear an oath of secrecy by the same deity.
On the day for the operation, the group was given the police uniform with the assurance that the weapon would be given to them at the spot where the operation was to take place.
ASP Tawiah said a team of policemen laid ambush at the place and arrested the gang when it popped up.
The police PRO used the opportunity to commend members of the public who volunteered vital information to the police to ensuring effective policing, while prais¬ing the Dormaa Police for the profession¬al and tactical skills they employed in arresting the gang.
He assured the public that the Police Administration would not shield uni¬formed men who committed crime.
ASP Tawiah said the uniforms were given to men and women of the Police Service to protect the good citizens of this country and not to molest, intimidate and harass Ghanaians.