Monday, July 29, 2013

Ghana: Aviation Staff in Custody for Exporting Indian Hemp

A driver in the employment of Starbow Airlines and an Aviation Security Officer have been held in custody by an Accra Circuit Court for allegedly exporting 250 kilograms of dried leaves suspected to be Indian hemp into the United Kingdom (UK)

Benjamin Kwesi Bentil and Foster Owusu are alleged to have conspired with other accomplices to export the said amount of kilograms of suspected Indian hemp to the UK through the Virgin Atlantic Airline.

They admitted the offense in their cautioned statement upon their arrest.

They however pleaded not guilty to the charges of conspiracy to commit crime and exportation of narcotic drug without the authority of the minister of health before the court presided over by Mr. Francis Obiri.

The court denied them bail and remanded them into the custody of the BNI to re-appear before the court on August 7, 2013.

The facts of the case are that on July 7, 2013, Benjamin Kwesi Bentil and Foster Owusu and their accomplices decided to exports some dried leaves suspected to be Indian hemp to the UK.

The prosecutor, DSP Aidan Dery told the court that on July 8, 2013, Foster Owusu field in for duty at Gate Number 21 to the Kotoka International Airport between 6:00am and 6:00pm, and informed his accomplices and requested that they send him ten boxes of dried leaves to his duty point before he closes.

He said this made Benjamin Kwesi Bentil to enter the airport through Foster Owusu at about 5:30pm and waited for arrival of the boxes which both of them sent to the Air Ghana Perishable Cargo Centre's warehouse.

According to him, at that point, their accomplices at the center loaded it together with food and exported them through Virgin Atlantic Airline number VC 0658/09 to the UK.

DSP Dery mentioned that at the Heathrow Airport, the ten boxes were detected to contain 250 kilograms of dried leaves suspected to be Indian hemp.

He further noted that Benjamin Kwesi Bentil and Foster Owusu were arrested and in their caution statement, they admitted having committed the offense.