Goaso Magistrate Court of Ahafo Region has fined a 28-year-old farmer, Kwabena Dinjatey, alias Ampong a cost of GHS 2,400 and bonded him for 12 months to be of good behaviour.
Dinjatey will in default, face a year’s imprisonment for unlawful entry and illegal farming at Desire Forest Reserve at Sumaama, a farming community near Siechem in the Asutifi South District.
He was convicted on his own plea of guilty.
Prosecuting Police Inspector Jonas Newlove Adjei told the court presided over by Mr. Kwaku Twumasi that, the convict is a farmer and lives at Sumaama while the complainant, Palmer Aikins Amponsah is Range Manager of Desire Forest Reserve under Mankranso Forest Service Division and resides at Tepa.
The Prosecutor, Inspector Newlove said there has been drastic destruction of the Desire Forest Reserve by the activities of illegal farmers.
He said on 10th July 2019 at about 1:30pm, the complainant and his team of Police and Military Officers were in the Desire Forest Reserve at Sumaama village inspecting the forest when the accused was met in a section of the forest where he had unlawfully encroached about two acres of land and cultivated plantain, cocoa and maize without the permission from the Forestry Commission of Ghana.
Inspector Newlove added that the accused was arrested and admitted in his caution statement and pleaded for mercy.
Meanwhile, Mr. Palmer Aikins Amponsah told Citi News that although illegal activities especially illegal farming in Desire Forest is quite vast, the forestry Commission has embarked on a massive exercise to curtail the situation.