The two ‘Kasoa boys’ who have been charged for the murder of a 10-year-old Ishmael Mensah Abdullah will face three year jail term if found guilty.
This is because, the two accused persons – a 15-year-old juvenile and an 18-year-old young offender per the Juvenile Justice Act, cannot be tried as adults.
In court on Thursday, May 12, when the case was called for the jury to be empaneled, the court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo said, the accused persons will no longer face jury trial due to their ages.
“Before today, I had stated we were going to empanel the jury.
“However, looking at the ages of the accused – one being 18 and the other being 15 and considering the Juvenile Justice Act, it may not be necessary to have them tried by jury,” Justice Lydia Osei Marfo stated.
The Juvenile Justice Act, 2003, Act 653 states that: “a young offender means a person who is 18 years or above 18 years but is under 21 years.”
According to the court, “the oldest amongst them is still a young offender under the Juvenile Justice Act.”
The court said, should the accused persons be found culpable, they are likely to be sentenced to a maximum of three years under the juvenile justice Act.
For this reason, the court adjourned the case to May 26 to enable the court set out parameters for the trial of accused persons who will be tried summarily.
According EIB Network’s Court Correspondent Murtala Inusah, the trial should be conducted with six months under the law.
The two accused persons are said to have killed their friend for ritual murder. While the 15-year-old had insisted on they committing the crime, the 18-year-old denies the offence.
The two were with present in court with their lawyers Samuel Atuah and Martin Kpebu. While Anastasia Karim, held brief for Nana Adoma Osei, for the prosecution.