Seven people who are facing trial for allegedly prospecting for gold without authority have been granted bail in the sum of GH¢30,000 with three sureties by the Tarkwa Circuit Court.
The seven accused persons whose ages range between 22 and 32 years, were charged for conspiracy to commit crime, prospecting for gold without authority and being on a premise for unlawful purpose.
When they appeared before the court, they all pleaded not guilty to all the charges proffered against them. They are however expected to re-appear before the court on October 2, 2017 for further hearing.
Police Chief Inspector Faustina Celestina Anaman narrated to the court, that the complainant, Albert Wommah, is a security officer at Aboso Goldfeilds Limited (AGL), Damang and lives at Aboso, in the Prestea Huni/Valley district.
She said some of the accused persons, Samuel Kumi, Francis Asmah, John Mensah, Simin Teye, Joseph Cobbinah, Ata Panyin, Samuel Monkoh and Kwaku are unemployed while others are farmers.
The prosecution said on September 9, this year, the complainant and his team of security officers got a hint that a group of people were digging for gold in one of the mining company’s pits near Damang.
When the complainant and his team went to the site, the accused persons were busily searching for gold in the pit.
According to Chief Inspector Anaman, one of the accused persons escaped upon seeing the security men, but the others were arrested together with some quality stones believed to contain gold.
They were all handed over to the police together with two shovels, five hammers, two chisels, two hoes and empty sacks with which they had been doing the prospecting.
In their caution statement, the accused said the AGL had abandoned the pit for years without working in it. So, went there to extract gold from some of the stones to make a living under the notion that the Aboso Goldfeilds Limited (AGL) would not make any further use of the pit.