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Six Chinese nationals remanded over illegal mining

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Six Chinese nationals, including a female, have been remanded by the Kaneshie District Court for allegedly engaging in illegal mining (galamsey) at Asankragua in the Western Region.

They are Chen Guibin, Yao Zencan, Lu Xiaobin, Cheng Chunroung, and Xue Lianhua.

The accused persons, whose pleas were not taken, are being held over six counts of possession of firearms without lawful excuse.

The police said, during the arrest, six pump action guns, cash in the sum of GHC1,292,180, sandy substances suspected to be gold dust, a yellowish bar suspected to be a bar of gold, and liquid substances suspected to be mercury, were found with the suspects.

Some alleged narcotic substance suspected to be a narcotic plant was found on them, the police said.

They are expected to reappear on June 1.

The Court, presided over by Ms Rosemond D. Agyiri, turned down a bail application by defence counsel, Mr Baba Jamal, saying the court was not clothed with jurisdiction to grant bail.

Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Sylvester Asare, who led prosecution, opposed the bail application, saying investigations were underway and  the six accused may hamper the process when granted bail.

The case, as narrated by ASP Asare, are that Intelligence Agencies picked up information sometime in April this year, that the accused, armed with weapons, were illegally mining at Asankragua in the Western Region.

Based on that information, a team of officers, both in plain clothes and uniform, were dispatched to the scene to ascertain the facts.

Prosecution said the team arrived at Asankragua and proceeded to “Resort Holyday Hotel” and Xin Di Hotel and arrested them.

Preliminary investigations had established that the accused were into buying, selling and refinery of gold without authority.

Prosecution said they purchased and armed their employees with guns to protect their unlawful activities.

Source: GNA

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