Defence counsel for seven treason felony suspects who have denied plotting a coup has explained why his clients were found with guns.
According to Victor Adawudu, his clients bought the guns to protect members of a group, Take Action Ghana, not to stage a coup, as maintained by the state prosecutors.
The defence counsel told an Accra High court Monday, that members of the group were attacked during an outreach program in the northern part of the country.
The leaders of the group, therefore, bought and registered the guns on the advice of a serving soldier Mr Adawudu identified only as “Sulley” who is not standing trial, Mr Adawudu explained.
Mr Adawudu on Monday urged the presiding judge, Justice George Buadi, to grant his clients bail.
He insisted they were not engaged in any plot to overthrow the government but have simply been arrested because some of them are classmates from school days and others are childhood friends.
The lawyer insisted nothing has been put forward by the state to show that they were engaged in any such plot.
While pledging to ensure his clients show up in court to stand trial he insisted a grant of bail is only fair since the state is not ready to commence the committal process.
Senior State Attorney, Hilda Craig, opposed the application saying the state does not suspect them of plotting a coup but the state knows as a matter of fact that they agreed and plotted to overthrow the government.
Explaining why the suspects should be denied bail, she maintained that some of them are serving officers of the armed forces and could interfere with investigations since the state’s witnesses include soldiers.
She told the court that the state does not trust that they will show up in court to stand trial if granted bail.
“The activities of these persons do not show that they are NGO’s who needed weapons. Why not contact the police if they had concerns” she said.
“As far as we are concerned, they had one intention, to overthrow the state. The state has overwhelming evidence and will provide it at the right time,” she said.
‘Plan to destablise the government’
Government in a statement released last month said a joint security operation led to the retrieval of several caches of arms, explosive devices, and ammunition from locations in Accra and Kpone-Bawaleshie in Dodowa.
The charge of possession of explosives, arms and ammunition without lawful excuse was then levelled against some of them.
The members of ‘Take Action Ghana’ (TAG), a group which according to the state included serving military officers intended to engage in a series of demonstrations geared at toppling the government.
According to state prosecutors, various sums of money were paid to obtain six pistols, some explosives and a further plan to buy two AK 47s at a price of ¢7,000.