An Accra Circuit Court has handed a 10-year jail term to a mason, Foster Anku, 26, who was charged for possessing eight cello taped compressed parcels of dried leaves suspected to be narcotic drug without lawful authority.
He had earlier pleaded not guilty to the charge, but the court presided over by Mr Aboagye Tandoh, found him guilty after trial.
In sentencing the court noted that per the evidence before it, it found out that, the evidence of the accused was consistent with that of the prosecution, and that Foster personally and physically went to buy the substance and not that it was given to him by a friend.
He said the court also found out that, Foster knew the content of the bag and the nature of the substance in it, adding that Foster’s attempt to create the impression that the substance was given to him by a friend was an afterthought.
He said the court also took into consideration the plea for mitigation by the accused, and the three years already spent in custody.
He is to serve 10 years in hard labour, and the investigator is to destroy the substance in the presence of the Court’s Registrar.
The facts of the case, as presented by Madam Dora Quaye, from the Attorney Generals Department was that Forster is a mason and a resident of Santa Maria in Accra.
He said on November 4, 2014, personnel of the Highway Patrol Unit, Accra detailed on the Asikuma-Shai Hills road arrested the suspect for transporting eight parcels of compressed dried leaves suspected to be cannabis sativa in his travelling bag.
He said the SWAT team stated that they stopped a passenger bus with registration no.GS 4834-13 driven by one Nicholas Dormie for a routine search at Asikuma junction and discovered a brown big bag in the booth of the bus.
The prosecution said they opened the bag with the assistance of the driver and discovered the eight parcels of the compressed dried leaves suspected to be cannabis sativa.
The driver pointed out suspect Forster, a passenger on board as the owner of the bag and its contents.
Madam Quaye said on interrogation, Foster claimed ownership of the bag containing the eight parcels of the compressed dried leaves concealed in it and mentioned one Eric at Alavanyo in the Volta Region as his source of supply.
He said Foster also mentioned one Albert’s name as the person who sent him with GH¢220.00 to buy the stuff from Alavanyo.