South Africa: Three Alleged Illegal Miners Arrested With Gold-Processing Equipment Worth R5 Million

20 February 2020

Three alleged illegal miners arrested with gold-processing equipment worth R5m were expected to appear in the Westonaria Magistrate's Court in Gauteng on Thursday for illegally processing gold.

The men, aged 21 to 47, were arrested on Wednesday on premises in Zuurbekom, west of Johannesburg.

Hawks spokesperson Captain Ndivhuwo Mulamu said the suspects were arrested during an integrated operation comprised of the Hawks' Serious Organised Crime Investigation unit, the West Rand Tactical Response Team and Eskom.

"Information was received of an illegal gold-processing plant, which the team observed for some time. On Wednesday, the team decided to interrupt the ongoing illegal operation and discovered five well-developed manufacturing operations on the plot.

"It was also established that the suspects were allegedly stealing electricity from Eskom to sustain their operations," Mulamu said.

Two alleged zama zamas (illegal miners) were found processing gold and were apprehended.

Mulamu said the property owner was also arrested for harbouring people who were operating criminal activities on the premises.

"The team seized 10 big phendukas (gold-refining machines), 30 tons of gold-bearing material, four gas cylinders and mercury, all worth about R5m. The Hawks' Priority Crime Specialised Investigation team have been roped in to initiate a financial and assets investigation," Mulamu said.

News24

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: News24Wire

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.