The Attorney General’s department has moved the case involving five suspects arrested in connection with the alleged assault of a young girl at Bantama from the Juvenile court.
The new development is because the AG’s department is contending that one of the suspects is above age 18. They are now pushing for the case to be tried in a regular court on this basis.
The five suspects were released as initial charges of conspiracy to rape and defilement were dropped, but they were rearrested by police immediately after the in-camera hearing at the Asokwa District Court.
The case has now been referred to an open court to continue with proceedings.
A lawyer for one of the suspects, E. O. Opoku, insisted that his clients were juveniles since their ages had not yet been proven.
H added he had submitted birth certificates “of some of them” which proved they are juveniles.
“The AG is making a case that one of them is not a juvenile and is, therefore, praying the court to send the case to a court of summary jurisdiction… We are saying that the court cannot make the referral to the Court of Summary jurisdiction on the basis that no determination has been made as to the age of the children. To us, they are all juveniles and must be tried by the juvenile court.”
The five suspects were arrested after a video went viral in December 2017 showing the boys sexually assaulting a young girl. The video was met with widespread criticism from the Ghanaian public with many demanding for the suspects to be duly punished.