One of the most wanted criminals in the country, John Kofi Fiagbedzi, alias Spider, was Monday killed in a gun battle with the police when h e led an attack on the residence of Ghana’s High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr Baba Kamara.

Spider had been on the police wanted list since 2006 after he had escaped from the Police Hospital where he was receiving treatment for wounds he received from a US Marine in December that year.

The police then placed a GH¢4.000 bounty each on Spider and his accomplice, Mathias Kwesi Tsegah who were said to have committed a series of robberies in Accra, Kumasi, Ho and other parts of the country.

Two foreign pistols, 26 rounds of ammunition, a car jerk, a screw driver and two mobile phones were retrieved from Spider after he had been shot. Some gold bracelets belonging to Mr Kamara’s wife were also found on Spider.

Tsegah is suspected to have escaped with GH¢6,680 which they had taken from Mr Kamara during the nearly 45-minute exercise after tying their victims.

Spider, Tsegah and a third suspect identified as Aaron, who is currently in custody, were alleged to have robbed a Ghanaian woman of $64,000 on the GIMPA road in 2008 while Spider single-handedly robbed a foreigner of his pathfinder vehicle on the Spintex Road in 2008.

The police also mentioned the robbery of a forex bureau near the St John’s Grammar School in early 2009 and another robbery on December 7, 2009 during which a RAV 4 vehicle was snatched from its owner. The vehicle was later retrieved from Ho during the Yam Festival there.

Briefing newsmen in Accra yesterday, the Accra Regional Police Commander, DCOP Rose Bio Atinga, who was assisted by her deputy, ACP Christian Tetteh Yohuno, said between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. on Monday the two armed young men entered Mr Kamara’s house.

She said someone in one of the rooms sent a distress call to a soldier friend, who in turn called the Police Information Room.

According to her when the police got to the house a policeman and a soldier had already laid ambush in the house upon hearing the distress calls on their walkie-talkie.

DCOP Atinga said at the time of the robbery lights in the house had been put out and it was unclear whether it was the robbers who had done that.

She said when the victims pleaded with the robbers to leave since they expected a high profile visitor the attackers declined to leave.

She said it was after a while that the two assailants decided to leave and, typical of Spider’s escapades, he started firing from his two pistols with the view to scaring away neighbours.

DCOp Atinga said as soon as the robbers came out of the house, Spider assisted Mathias to jump out of the house amidst the firing.

She said Spider was unlucky, as he was hit by the police response. She was certain that Mathias could also have been hit by a bullet, and, therefore, appealed to members of the public, especially operators of health facilities to report anyone with bullet wounds to the nearest police station.

On the December 21, 2006 incident DCOP Atinga said Spider had been stabbed at Tesano by a US Marine who was on holidays in Ghana.

She said Spider was remanded in prison custody in Nsawam after he had successfully been operated upon by surgeons at the Police Hospital.

She said Spider’s condition deteriorated six months after and he was brought back to the Police Hospital for treatment.
She said although Spider was on police guard he managed to escape from the hospital which resulted in the loss of job by the policeman guarding him.

She said the Police Administration subsequently put a GH¢2,000 bounty on him while one of his foreign victims also added GH¢2,000 to it.

Source: Daily Graphic/Ghana