25 galamseyers jailed 115 years over illegal mining

The Tarkwa Circuit Court last Thursday, sentenced 25 illegal miners to a total jail term of 115 years for illegally min­ing at five different galamsey sites in the Western Region in 2021.

The court, presided over by Mrs Hathia Ama Manu, sentenced each accused persons to five years imprisonment for conspiracy to commit crime, namely illegal mining and 10 years for Illegal mining, contrary to section 99(2) of mineral and mining Act.

Additionally, the court imposed a fine of 10,000 penalty units on each convict. They pleaded not guilty.

The sentence is to run concur­rently.

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Richard Kumasi and four others, were sentenced to a total imprisonment of 100 years on two counts, apart from a fine of 10,000 penalty units (PU) each.

Each convict was also sentenced to five years imprisonment on count one in high labour (IHL).

Sampson Mefe and four other accused persons were also con­victed and sentenced to five years in jail for count one and five years and 10,000 PU and 15 years IHL on count two.

Further, the court declared that Gordon Naah and three accused persons be convicted on both counts and sentenced to five years jail term on count one and count two, 10,000 PU and 15 years IHL.

Meanwhile, the fourth ac­cused person, a juvenile has been remitted to the Juvenile Court for sentencing.

In the case of the Rep. vs. George Fynn, one Effah and Christian are at large and has been declared wanted by the Tarkwa Circuit Court.

The accused persons were convicted on both counts; each handed five years in prison with hard labor and 10,000 PU and 15 years IHL on count two.

The court convicted John Domotey and five others and sentenced them to serve five years on count one and on count two, 10000 PU and 15 years IHL.

The prosecution, led by Assis­tant State Attorney, Maara Pelpuo and assisted by Assistant State Attorney, Kingsley Agyekum, told the court that, George Fynn was arrested at Esuoso, Tarkwa, after mining together with two others, under a high tension cable.

Again, she recalled that, at about 10:00 am on September 8, 2021, the Assembly man of Himan Electoral Area, Alex Baako with eight others met Sampson Mefe, 25, Eric Beyetua, 21, Nkubi Francis, 23, Timothy Kumordja, 20 and Larbi Evans, engaged in illegal mining in River Ankobra with a mining dredge.

John Domotey’s group and that of Richard Kumasi were arrested at the Ankobra river mining for gold, and later, handed over to the Prestea Police.

Similarly, Ms Pelpuo said Kojo Amoo, a Range Manager at the Forestry Division, Tarkwa, also reported that, at about 10.20 am on February 2, 2021, Gordon Naa, Bismark Joribon, Abdulai Asong­mene and Nicholas Dunuanua, il­legal miners at Simpa, were found mining in the Ndumfri forest reserve, near Simpa.

The team managed to arrest them, handed them over to the Tarkwa Police together with detec­tor machine, two shovels, and two pick axes, which they used in their illegal mining activities.

“About one and half acres of the forest have been destroyed en­tirely by the illegal miners includ­ing the accused persons. There were three dug pits with heaped sand around them,” Ms Pelpuo told the court.


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