Driver jailed eight years for stealing US$80,000 worth of jute sacks

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A driver who stole 128 bundles of Ghana Cocoa Board’s Jute Sacks, worth 80,000 dollars, has been sentenced to eight years imprisonment by an Accra Circuit Court.

Duut Laari, aka Yakubu Mohammed and Sulley, was found guilty on the charges of conspiracy to steal and stealing at the end of the trial.

He was sentenced to eight years imprisonment on each of the charges, to run concurrently. His accomplice, one Osman, is at large.

Laari, who was tasked to transport the 128 bundles of the jute sacks to Ghana Cocoa Board’s Warehouse at Agona Swedru, sold them and abandoned his company’s vehicle on the Tema Beach Road.

The convict, afterwards, went to hide in the Nkronza District and Bunkpurugu. He was, however, picked up following police intelligence.

The court, handing down sentence, said it took into consideration the fact that Laari had spent two year in custody although granted bail, his age and his three children.

It further considered the fact that the stolen items were not retrieved, that he also abandoned the vehicle after selling the jute sacks, and the value of the items.

Prosecuting, Chief Inspector Seth Frimpong, said the complainant was a freight forwarder at Carloking Services Limited at Tema Harbour and that Laari resided at Tema.

In 2018, prosecution said Laari was employed by Carloking Services Limited as a driver and in November, the same year, Ghana Cocoa Board took delivery of quantities of jute sacks at the Tema Harbour and Carloking Services cleared the goods to be transported to the Ghana Cocoa Board Warehouse at Agona Swedru in the Central Region.

On November 16, 2018, the company loaded 128 bundles of the jute sacks, valued at $80,000, onto the company’s DAF Truck with registration number GT 9026-12 and ordered Laari to off load them at the COCOBOD Warehouse at Agona Swedru.

Prosecution said Laari, who had planned to divert the goods, called Osman and they sold them and abandoned the truck along the Tema Beach Road and bolted.

Laari went into hiding at Nkronza and later moved to Bunkpurugu.

On August 30, 2019, prosecution said intelligence led to the arrest of Laari from his hideout at Bunkpurugu and was brought to Accra.

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