It has been discovered that Chinese galamsey kingpin, Aisha Huang and her accomplices have been using ‘WeChat,’ social media platform for their correspondence regarding illegal mining activities in the country.
So far, the notorious galamsey queen and seven other Chinese nationals have been arrested and have been remanded by two separate courts in Accra.
Two other Ghanaians including a reverend minister said to be linked to the Chinese illegal miners have also been arraigned and granted bail.
Documents before the Criminal Division of the Accra High Court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo revealed that Aisha Huang and her four accomplices have been using ‘WeChat’, a social media platform for their illegal activities.
“In addition, it was disclosed that the accused persons together with others use WeChat, a social media platform for all correspondences in relation to their illegal mining activities,” Mercy Arthur, a Principal State Attorney told the court.
Four accomplices charged
On September 16, four more persons said to be accomplices of notorious galamsey kingpin Aisha Huang were remanded by the Criminal Division of the Accra High Court.
They are made up of three Chinese nationals and a Vietnamese whose permit to stay in the country is said to have expired.
These Chinese nationals – Shi Yang alias Philip, Li Wei Guo, and Shi Mei Zhi are on a provisional charge of engaging in small scale-mining without a licence, contrary to section 99(2)(a) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703) as amended by Act 995 of 2019.
While Nguyen Thi Thanh Tuyen, described as a Vietnamese, was on charge of remaining in Ghana after the expiration of a permit contrary to sections 20(1) and 52(1)(d) of the Immigration Act, 2000 (Act 573).
Their pleas have been reserved by the Court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo and are to re-appear on October 11.
Mercy Arthur, the Principal State Attorney, per the brief facts told the court that, a team of personnel from the Ministry of National Security, Accra upon receipt of intelligence arrested the accused persons on September 14, 2022.
She said, the first, second, and third accused persons are Chinese nationals and were arrested together with the fourth accused person a Vietnamese national, from their residence at Paraku Estates near Daban, Kumasi in the Ashanti Region.
The Principal State Attorney said preliminary investigations revealed that the four accused persons were involved in prohibited mining transactions with En Huang @ Aisha and other Chinese nationals at mining sites in the Obuasi municipality.
She told the court that, a search conducted at their residence at Paraku Estates, Kumasi revealed five payment receipts of evidencing purchase of mining concessions.
“In addition, it was disclosed that the accused persons together with others use WeChat, a social media platform for all correspondences in relation to their illegal mining activities,” she noted.
According to her, investigations further revealed that the fourth accused person was issued an extension of permit on May 9, 2022 to remain in Ghana until August 8, 2022 but at the time of her arrest, the permit had expired.
“The four accused persons have been detained to assist with investigations and frantic efforts are being made to find and arrest their accomplices, the Principal State Attorney noted.
Source: Ghana/Starrfm.com.gh/Murtala Inusah