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EMMANUEL KOFI v. COMMISSIONER OF POLICE


  • appeal
  • 1961-03-24
  • SUPREME COURT
  • GLR 184-185
  • Print

VAN LARE, SARKODEE-ADOO AND AKIWUMI, JJ.S.C.


Summary

Criminal law?-Being in premises for an unlawful purpose?-Criminal Code, Cap. 9, (1951 Rev.) s. 172.

Headnotes

The appellant was convicted in the circuit court of stealing a motor car and of being in premises for an unlawful purpose. He appealed against both convictions but this report is concerned solely with his conviction for being in premises for an unlawful purpose.The charge was in the following terms:"STATEMENT OF OFFENCE(2) Being in premises for an unlawful purpose contrary to section 172 of Cap 9".PARTICULARS OF OFFENCE(2) Emmanuel Kofi-Mason, for that you on the same day and place aforesaid, within the jurisdiction of this Court were found in the premises of Messrs. U.A.C. Ltd. at the hour of 1.30 a.m. for an unlawful purpose to wit stealing.?"Section 172 of the Criminal Code, Cap. 9 (1951 Rev.) provides: "172. Whoever is found in or about any market, wharf, jetty or landing place, or in or about any vessel, verandah, outhouse, building, premises, passage, gateway, yard, garden or enclosed piece of land for any unlawful purpose, shall be liable to imprisonment for three months.?"The appellant had been found trying to climb a ladder placed against a wall in an attempt to enter the premises.

Judgement

APPEAL against convictions for stealing and being in premises for an unlawful purpose contrary to section 172 of Cap. 9, (1951 Rev.), by the Circuit Court, Cape Coast (Judge Siriboe) on the 16th November, 1960. The conviction for stealing was upheld. The facts are set out in the judgment of the Supreme Court.

JUDGMENT OF VAN LARE, J.S.C

Van Lare, J.S.C. delivered the judgment of the court. [His lordship dismissed the appeal with respect to the first count and continued:] In regard to the second count of being found in premises for an unlawful purpose, however, the position is different. It is not the house from which the motor vehicle was stolen but another premises, that is to say outside U.A.C. wholesale where the appellant together with others, was found trying to climb a ladder placed outside the wholesale wall in an attempt to enter the premises. In the absence of evidence that the appellant was found in the premises the conviction on the second count on which he was convicted cannot stand. To succeed on the second count there must be clear and unmistakeable evidence that the appellant had been found in the building. The evidence in this case is that the appellant was found outside the building. We refer to the case of R. v Lumsden1 which is in point.

Learned Senior State Attorney finds himself unable to support the conviction on the second count, and we agree with him. The appeal on the second count is allowed. Conviction and sentence passed in respect of the second count quashed and set aside. The appellant is acquitted and discharged on the second count.

The sentences passed at the trial being concurrent there is no difference to the serving term of 3 years I.H.L. on the first count of stealing.

Decision

<P>Conviction and sentence quashed.</P>

Plaintiff / Appellant

Appellant in person.

Defendant / Respondent

K. Dua Sakyi

Referals

R. v Lumsden [1951] 2 K.B. 513; [1951] 1 All E.R. 1101; 35 Cr. App. R. 57.

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