Thirty-two illegal miners have been arrested by the Operation Vanguard Taskforce on mission in the Eastern region.
The suspects were arrested on Monday August 28, 2017 by the taskforce led by Captain Appiagyei Stephen.
All 32 suspects according to the Public Relations Officer of the Eastern regional Police Command, ASP Ebenezer Tetteh were on Thursday transferred to the Regional Police Headquarters in Koforidua for prosecution in court.
The suspects are Godwin Fianu, 37, Yaw Forson, 41, Fuseini Sulley, 35, Ali Siedu, 50, Zandia Akolugo, 48, Akomea Boateng, 37, Emmanuel Owusu 27, Tormenu Eric 27, Francis Portufe 19, Muniru Fuseini 19, Camping Mohamed 29, Kwasi Ali 35, Kofi Frimpong 46, Amartey Gideon 22, and Haruna Iddrisu 20.
The rest are Charles Asumang 41, Samuel Yeboah 48, Kofi Adjei 46, Desmond Nana Agyemang 32, Kwadwo Nsiah 47, Kofi Agyemang 39, Kwabena Kwateng 50, Ofori Kwame 42, Lawrence Boateng, 28, Daniel Teye 38 and Frank Mensah 44.
The others are Isaac Mensah 28, Yaw Amoateng 30, Kofi Osei 39, Naba Tia 27 and Aboagye Agyemang 37.
The “taskforce arrested the suspects while on Patrol duty to flash out illegal miners who were illegally mining at Okagya bush near Kwarbeng with 20 pumping machines, 3 water holes, 1 grease gun, 1 carpet and 2 head pans.
“The team also retrieved one locally manufactured rifle with three live cartridges from the site. The suspects were escorted to RHQ whilst the exhibits are kept save under the custody of team. Efforts are being made to transport the exhibit to the station,” ASP Ebenezer Tetteh said.
The latest arrest brings the number of illegal miners arrested by the taskforce in the region to about 70.
Those arrested earlier are currently facing prosecution.
The Eastern Regional Minister, Eric Kwakye Darfuor, who doubles as Chairman of REGSEC at a recent forum on the activities of operation vanguard urged residents of the region to support the taskforce to eradicate the menace to save the environment.