The seven suspects arrested for allegedly stealing cattle from the Zacholi community following the killing of some persons in that community last week, have been found guilty of the offence and consequently fined GHS 4,200 each.
They risk serving nine months in jail in default.
At the first court sitting on the matter, all seven suspects pleaded guilty to the charge of conspiracy to steal and stealing.
They were therefore convicted on their own plea despite pleading with the court for forgiveness that they will never repeat such an act.
They argued that “it was the work of the devil” that got them involved in the act.
The court fined each of the accused persons GHS 4,200, that is GHS1,200 for the crime and GHS3,000 as compensation to the affected persons or in default, to serve a prison term of nine months.
The presiding judge, His Honour Anthony Aduku-Aidoo, said the court was being lenient because they were first-time offenders.
He stressed that the court abhors tribal conflicts.
Meanwhile, the complainant, Karimu Sambo, said he was disappointed with the outcome of the case, indicating that the fine was woefully inadequate to purchase the cattle.
“The court saying they should each pay GHS 3,000 is very inadequate. About 100 cattle were killed, and the seven are to pay GHS 3,000 each. If I had known that this was going to be the ruling of the court, I would not have arrested them. How am I going to look after my children, all my cattle were killed,” he said.
But the prosecutor, Chief Inspector Gariba Kwasi, said he was satisfied with the judgement.
“Looking at the whole issue and looking at the sentence that was given, the four cows that the accused persons were seen with have a value of GHS20,000. With the accused persons being seven, the judge asked that each of them pays GHS 3,000 as compensation to the complainant. Basically, looking at that amount involved and the final judgement, I am okay with the whole thing,” he said.