4 Canadian kidnappers sentenced to 40 years in prison

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The four defendants in custody for the kidnapping of two Canadian women were sentenced by the Criminal Division of the Accra High Court to a total of 40 years in prison with hard labor.

Sampson Agarlor, the ringleader, Elvis Ojiyorwe, Jeff Omarsar, all citizens of Nigeria, and Yusif Yakubu, a citizen of Ghana, were all found guilty by the court of two counts of conspiring to commit abduction and two counts of kidnapping.

They were each given a nine-year sentence for conspiracy and a ten-year term for abduction.

The court stated that the sentences would be served simultaneously, which means that each person would get the maximum sentence of 10 years, for a total of 40 years.

The court, presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo, ruled that the firearms recovered from the scene and the prisoners’ mobile phones that were used to commit the crime should be burned.

The family of the victims reportedly followed the verdict via video connection.

The prosecution was able to satisfy the burden of proof, according to the court, after bringing 11 witnesses, which the defendants were unable to contest.

The court noted that this occurrence damaged Ghana’s international connections with investors. The court also stated that the convicts entered the nation with the intent to abduct expatriates in order to profit.

Justice Osei Marfo encouraged the state to implement legal changes so that tougher penalties be meted out to address abduction concerns.

According to her, the current maximum punishment of 10 years for kidnapping is not deterrent enough and Ghana should learn from other countries who have strengthened their laws.

The Director of Public Prosecution, Mrs Yvonne Atakora Obuobisa welcomed the call and said a committee has been constituted to review some of the laws.

She said that they will ask for the court’s ruling and refer the call to the committee.

The victims and their families received an apology from attorney Yaw Dankwah, who represented three of the four convicted criminals.

He asserted that the sole purpose of attorneys is to support the court system.

Elvis Ojiyorwe, the second convicted criminal, knelt before the court after receiving his sentence to express regret to the victims and their families.

But the judge rejected his request for a lighter punishment.

Apology

No one deserves what they (the victims) have gone through, Justice Osei Marfo remarked in his apology to the victims and their families.

“Matters like these require justice,” she remarked. I apologize sincerely to the victims and their loved ones.

Source: Ghanatodayonline.com

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