The accused driver, who denied the charges initially, was convicted after a trial, while his accomplice, Wang Liang, remains at large, the Ghana News Agency (GNA) reports.
Court jails driver for 8 years for attempted kidnapping
An Accra Circuit Court has handed down an eight-year prison sentence with hard labour to Godfred Ayittey, a driver found guilty of attempting to kidnap a businessman and his daughter for ransom.
The case unfolded when Richard Asomaning, a witness in the trial, reported to the Tema Police on August 3, 2022. Asomaning disclosed that Ayittey had recruited him over the phone to participate in a kidnapping operation. Asomaning, feigning interest, provided copies of his driver's license and Ghana card, along with those of another recruit, Peter Ofoe Agbovie, to Ayittey.
The witnesses, seeking to gather more information, requested a meeting with Ayittey to ascertain the identity of the intended victims. Ayittey, communicating solely via phone, identified the victims as Mr. Joseph K. Horgle, the owner of J. K. Horgle Transport and Company Limited, and his daughter, Elinam, who serves as the Deputy Managing Director of the same company.
Despite never meeting the witnesses in person, Ayittey orchestrated the operation through phone communication, creating a WhatsApp group for planning. He provided funds to Asomaning to conduct surveillance on the victims, even procuring initial photographs of the company's premises. Agbovie was instructed to rent a vehicle, while Ayittey planned to acquire weapons for the operation.
The National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) joined the investigation, revealing that Ayittey had previously worked as a driver at the intended victim's company from 2017 to 2018. Aware of the victim's financial capabilities, Ayittey intended to request a ransom in cryptocurrency, funnelling the funds to Wang Liang's account in China to avoid detection.
Ayittey was tracked and arrested on August 9, 2022, where he admitted to the charges, pointing to Wang Liang as the mastermind. Investigations uncovered Ayittey's exploitation of a job-seeking platform, Jiji online, to recruit individuals for the nefarious plot.
The court's decision underscores the severity of the crime, serving as a deterrent against such heinous acts in the future. The hunt for Wang Liang, who remains at large, continues as law the police intensify efforts to bring all perpetrators to justice.
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