A Circuit court at Dormaa-Ahenkro, Dormaa Central Municipality of Bono Region, has sentenced Alexander Addo, 24-year-old unemployed, to a fine of GH¢ 1.2 billion, for engaging in small scale mining without a license.
Addo pleaded guilty to the charge and in default, would serve 20 years imprisonment in hard labour.
Police Inspector (P/Insp) Emmanuel Asare told the court that the complainant, a farmer, and the convict were residents of Wamfie, the district capital of Dormaa East, in Bono Region.
Prosecution said the complainant owned farmland, where part of that land had been cultivated with plantain and vegetables, located at Wammu near Wamfie.
Insp Asare told the presided over by Mr Samuel Djanie Kotey, that the convict and other illegal miners, popularly known as galamseyers took possession of the land and caused damage to it.
The court heard that the complainant with the assistance of some young men arrested accused while engaging in illegal mining on the farmland.
Insp Asare said while escorting Addo to the police station, he escaped and when the complainant visited her farm again she met accused and one other accomplice engaged in mining.
The complainant and her son left for home and returned only to meet the accused and his accomplice prospecting for gold by the bank of the Wam River.
Insp Asare said Addo and his accomplice fled when they saw the complainant and her son, but Addo was later arrested.
The prosecution said the complainant found a pickaxe, a shovel and a cutlass believed to be implements used by accused and his accomplice in the illegal mining.
Insp Asare said the convict admitted the offence in his investigation caution statement to police, and mentioned Effah, resident of Wamfie as his accomplice. -GNA