A Circuit Court in Takoradi presided over by Mrs. Abigail Animah Asare, has slapped three illegal small-scale miners with a 15-year jail term each; according to a Citi News report.
The convicts are also to pay a fine of GHS 240,000 each.
The three, Joseph Donkoh, 40, Joseph Paul, 27, and Charles Ewuse, 27, were arrested on 16th February 2021, carrying out illegal small-scale mining in the Cape-3-Point Forest Reserve of the Western Region according to the Prosecutor of the case, Sergeant Robert Amonoo Yawson.
They were charged with conspiracy to commit crime and undertaking small-scale mining operations without licence contrary to Section 23(1) of the Criminal Offenses Act, and Undertaking Small Scale Mining without licence contrary to Section 99(2) of the Amended Minerals and Mining Act of 2019, ACT 995.
The Presiding Judge, Mrs. Abigail Animah Asare in her ruling on Wednesday, June 9th, 2021, sentenced each of the three accused persons to 15 years imprisonment on the two charges; and also fined each of them GHS 240,000 each.
If they default in paying the fine, they will each serve two additional weeks in jail.
According to the Judge, Mrs. Abigail Animah Asare, she was lenient with the sentence because she “took into consideration the fact that the accused persons were first offenders and also did not waste the precious time of the court”.