SIMON MUNTEMBA writes
TWENTY illegal miners at Kansashi Mine in Solwezi have been arrested for being in possession of 1701.6 grammes of gold concentrate.
This was police received a tip-off from members of the public who suspected some people to have been conducting illegal business in the area.
Police public relations officer, Esther Katongo, said the illegal 20 miners were cornered in Solwezi and found with 1701.6 grams of suspected gold concentrate.
“On Monday 11 September 2020, police received a tip-off from members of the public who suspected some people to have been conducting illegal business from a house belonging to M Valeta Ramon,” Ms Katongo said.
Ms Katongo said police visited the premises and intercepted four motor vehicles, which were about to drive out of the premises.
She said the 16 suspects were apprehended at different times with respective grams of suspected gold concentrate while three others were caught in the act of smelting the concentrate.
She added that the total number of suspects arrested in the gold scandal was 20, including the owner of the house who surrendered himself to the police.
“15 gas cylinders, 13 kilogrammes of gold concentrate, 48 pieces of suspected pure gold weighing 242.12 gramms, cash money amounting to K413,520. 00, 3 x 20 litres of acid and two scales were recovered,” she said.
Ms Katongo explained that the four suspects had been charged for the offence of fraudulently dealing in minerals without a license while 16 had been charged for being found in possession of property believed to have been stolen or unlawfully obtained.
Ms Katongo said the value of the recovered gold concentrate was yet to be ascertained.