The Asante Bekwai Circuit Court has sentenced two highway robbers to 20 years imprisonment each, in hard labour.

Musah Alhassan and Yakubu Abdulai denied conspiring to rob 17 persons on a Sprinter bus from Behenase to Kumasi, but they were found culpable after trial.

Detective Chief Inspector Eric Twum, prosecuting, told the Court presided over by Mr Isaac Apeatu that Alhassan, 24 years, and Abdulai, 25 years, the convicts, claimed to be illegal miners also known as “galamsey” and residents of Homase and Buipe, respectively in the Northern region.

Prosecution said in the past three months, there had been series of robberies on the Anwiankwanta to Poano stretch of the road which resulted in the death of one person and robbery of valuables of road users.

He said Police therefore intensified Patrols on the Poano to Anwiankwanta stretch.

Prosecution said on July 11, 2023, about 04:30 hours, Police received information that a robbery was ongoing at a section of the road, the outskirts of Behenase. Thus, they rushed to the scene but the said robbers had escaped, the Court heard.

Detective Chief Inspector Twum said the Police Patrol team whiles combing the area, spotted a woman, one of the victims walking by the roadside towards Behenase.

She informed the Police that she was a victim of that robbery and narrated how the robbery occurred, prosecution told the Court.

She told the Police that she was returning to the scene to get the rest of her money she had hidden in the bush during the robbery. Detective Chief Inspector Twum said the team drove her to the scene.

On the way, she spotted Alhassan and Abdulai about 200 meters away from the scene, walking by the roadside and she identified them to the Patrol team as members of the gang.

Prosecution said this led to the arrest of the convicts. A search revealed GH¢75.00 and two mobile phones namely; Itel and TECNO smart phones on Alhassan.

Abdulai also had on him GH¢333.00 and three mobile Phones namely: TECNO, WiDO and SAMSUNG GALAXY S8+ with International Mobile Equipment Identification code 352805091057212.

He said during interrogations, Abdulai claimed he recently bought the said Samsung S8+ from the Kumasi Kejetia.

A search was conducted on the phone after Alhassan and Abdulai had signed a consent form in the presence of an independent witness and Police established that their claim was false.