The High Court in Accra hearing the Kasoa ritual murder case has issued a trial warrant for the 18-year-old second accused to be remanded in Nsawam prison instead of police custody.

This decision follows allegations of misconduct while the accused was held in police cells. The 18-year-old, standing trial alongside a 15-year-old juvenile, is accused of murdering 10-year-old Ishmael Mensah Abdella in Kasoa.

Presiding over the case, Justice Lydia Osei Marfo ruled that the accused, who has been in police custody since April 2021, should be transferred to prison custody. The prosecution, represented by Senior State Attorney Nana Adoma Osei, reported that officers at the Osu Police Station requested this change, citing issues with the accused’s behavior in the cells. Though specific details of the misconduct were not disclosed, the prosecution mentioned that the accused had been involved in fights with other inmates.

Lawrence Boampong Wireko, the counsel for the second accused, was unaware of these allegations and requested that his client remain in police custody, emphasizing that the trial was nearly concluded. He suggested that the court caution the accused instead. However, the court decided to proceed with the transfer to prison custody.

During the court session, it was revealed that the accused had been moved between various police stations due to behavioral issues. Despite the second accused’s denial of these allegations, Justice Marfo ordered his transfer to ensure orderly conduct and secure custody.

Additionally, the trial faced delays due to the absence of jurors, preventing the court from summing up the case and receiving a verdict. As a result, the case has been adjourned to July 8, 2024, marking the second deferral following previous adjournments in May and June.

The background of the case involves both accused teenagers charged with the conspiracy and murder of Ishmael Mensah Abdella. The 15-year-old has admitted to the crime, implicating the 18-year-old, who denies the charges.

The prosecution has presented seven witnesses, including family members of the younger accused. The court awaits the jurors’ return to conclude the trial.

Source: Inusah