Call it bail for sale. You will be spot on. In the midst of all the present concerns about the integrity of the security system, we are witnessing crime in the crime office. Corruption Watch (CW) has caught police officers taking money in order to grant bail.
This is happening in spite of the clear position of the law on bail as stated in Article 14(4) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana and Section 96 (1-6) of the Criminal Procedure Act (1960). In addition, the Ghana Police Service has repeatedly stressed that police enquiry bail is free.
CW investigations uncovered multiple cases in which some officers of the Ghana Police Service extorted money from suspects in their custody in return for bail. CW conducted the investigations, which involved undercover operations like embedding CW investigators with families and friends of suspects, in randomly selected police stations in three different regions – the Greater Accra, Central, and Ashanti regions. CW guaranteed the protection of the identity of most suspects, since their cases were yet to be closed, and therefore gave
confidentiality to some of the specific cases followed. Cash for bail In the specific matter of cash for bail, police officers were captured demanding or receiving cash rewards between GH¢50.00 and GH¢1,000.00. The means of taking the money in some police stations come under the pretext of a charge for bail; others induce the relatives into giving bribes or facilitation fees for their relatives to be released while some delay the process to make the families believe that they are stressing and risking a lot to get their relatives released.
i I In the end, this induces the dishing out of money as a form of appreciation. Madina Divisional Police Command We start from the Madina Divisional Police Command located in the La-Nkwantanang Municipality. Charging for police enquiry bail was not a secret and a Crime Officer by the name CPL Hannah Idan demanded money in the open aggressively without applying diplomacy.
It was as though the payment was a legal requirement. What CW captured was a clear indication that other officers were aware of “You told me you can afford GH¢100.00, but I rejected it only for you to be offering me GH¢20.00 after all the time wasted the entire day”! CPL Idan lamented in a captured Mr John Tormeti, father of the suspect, however, declined payment on the basis that he
.e tr knew bail is supposed to be free. In a follow up interview with Corporal Hannah Idan, she admitted to Corruption Watch that she received the money from the relatives of the suspect.
However, she insisted she received the money as a gesture of appreciation but not upon demand. “We are not supposed to take money for bail, I know that and then taking money from the person wasn’t proper, that one I know I’m guilty,” she confessed. Kumasi Central Police Station Elsewhere, at the Kumasi Central Police Station in the Ashanti region, a Criminal Investigations Department officer of the Anti-Robbery Unit identified as Solomon allegedly received 800 Ghana cedis in return for the release of two suspects in November 2018.
According to the facts, after bail requirements for the suspects were met, the suspects were asked to pay 800 Ghana cedis before bail. However, Police investigator Solomon failed to confirm or deny claims he received money in return to bail the suspects. In fact, he called the bluff of CW and bragged he was not afraid of the Special Prosecutor nor the Inspector General of Police.
“Whether or not, I don’t have to tell you, listen to me, do you know who you are talking to? You could be calling from the office of the Special Prosecutor, I’m not going anywhere, I’m here, do your worst, report to anybody that you like, report even to the President, I’m here, do you think I fear court? I’ve been going to court for the past 20 years, if you don’t know, maybe you had not been born by then,” the officer angrily responded to CW’s Frederick Asiamah.
Kpeshie Nungua Police Station At the Nungua Police Station, CW spotted a physically challenged man sitting in a wheelchair at the entrance of the charge office for over 30 minutes looking desperate.
When a CW investigator approached him, he lamented about being charged GH¢400.00 for the release of his son by the commander. A CW investigator decided to sponsor the payment of GH¢200.0
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