Produce DSP Mawuenyega- Human Rights Court orders BNI
The Human Rights Court on Monday ordered the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) and the Attorney General to produce Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Gifty Mawuenyaga in court.
DSP Mawuenyega, Deputy Commander of Commercial Crime Unit at the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Headquarters, had been detained by the BNI for alleged suspicious dealings with Nana Ama Martins, who was at the centre of the recent cocaine turned sodium bicarbonate saga.
DSP Mawuenyega, who was picked up on December 29, 2011, after investigators from the BNI established suspicious dealings between her and Nana Martins. She had since been in the custody of the BNI.
The court presided over by Mr Justice U.P. Dery ordered that the Senior Police Officer be produced on January 11 and show cause as to why DSP Mawuenyega had not been granted bail.
This was after the court had granted an exparte- motion on a writ of Habeas Corpus filed against the BNI and the Attorney General to produce the body of the Senior Police officer in court.
The court noted that reasons for the applicant’s detention were unknown except to say she dealt with Nana Ama Martins.
In his argument before the court, Mr Oliver K.A. Dzeble, counsel for DSP Mawuenega, lamented over the continuous detention of his client saying that, the action was in breach of Article 33, sections one and two of the 1992 Constitution.
Mr Dzeble contended that his client was in custody due to the fact that she was suspected to have played a role in the trial of a narcotic suspect who was acquitted and discharged by a court.
He opined that under the Constitution, a person after an arrest should be produced within 48 hours before a court.
According to him the reasons given by the BNI for her detention did not constitute a criminal offence.
The BNI contended that there were suspicions that DSP Mawuenyega facilitated the swapping of the cocaine exhibit at the court.
It said DSP Mawueyega’s unit had nothing to do with the case, and yet she was said to have met Nana Martins several times in her office on the blind side of the Police Narcotics Unit, which was investigating the case.
According to the BNI source, DSP Mawuenyega claimed to have known the suspect since 2008.
It said police internal investigations had revealed that a female officer had been in contact with Nana Martins, facilitated the sale of her house and got her a lawyer.
As soon as Nana Martins returned from the US where she had jumped bail and was re-arrested, DSP Mawuenyega sought counsel for her.
According to the source, investigations by the BNI had established some dealings between DSP Mawuenyega and Nana Martins and her relations.
Nana Martins was acquitted and discharged by the Accra Circuit Court for possessing cocaine in the trial which was aborted after the court had upheld a submission of ‘no case’ made by counsel for the accused.
The court was puzzled as to how a substance alleged to be cocaine which was seized from the accused person, confirmed by the police to be cocaine after testing and weighing 1,020 grammes later turned out to be sodium bi-carbonate after the court had ordered another test to be conducted by the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA).
After more than three years into the trial, the court called on the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) to as a matter of urgency, to institute a service inquiry to determine who might have tampered or changed the drug alleged to have been found on the accused and prescribe the necessary sanctions.
The substance had been in the custody of the police and the court ruled that if the allegation was true, it was a serious indictment on efforts by the law enforcement agencies to curtail the drug menace in the country. GNA