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Wednesday 24 May 2017


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General News

[ 2017-05-19 ]

Aisha Huang with her galamsey workers at a court hearing

'Galamsey Queen' in Nsawam Prison
An Accra High Court (Criminal Division) yesterday
could not hear the bail application filed by
lawyers for the five Chinese nationals, including
Aisha Huang who has adopted the local name Yaa
Asantewaa – the 31-year-old woman suspected to be
one of Ghana’s most notorious illegal miners.

The galamsey queen’s hope of being granted bail
was therefore dashed as she made her way to the
Nsawam Prisons where she is cooling off.

The court, presided over by Charles Edward Ekow
Baiden, held that the court had observed some
inconsistencies in the affidavit in opposition
filed by the Attorney General (AG).

Jerry Akeweteh, lawyer for the other suspects –
Gao Jin Cheng, 45; Lu Qi Jun, 39; Haibin Gao, 26;
Zhang and Zhang Pen, 23 – had dashed to the court
five days before in a desperate attempt to secure
bail for his clients.

He said the defence counsel had filed a motion on
notice for bail pending the trial on May 15.

But Mercy Arthur, the chief state attorney,
opposed the bail application and requested for
more time to study the reasons for the bail
application as well as a docket she received from
the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS).

She stated that the prosecution received the
docket yesterday from the GIS and were going to
charge the suspects under the Mineral and Mining

Ms Arthur was emphatic that the AG, upon calling
the docket from the Immigration Service, realized
that the activities of the suspects could have
contravened other laws.

She stated that while the prosecution was putting
their case together, they were served with the
instant bail application.

Justice Baiden said he saw the AG’s affidavit in
opposition to the bail application on Wednesday.

He wondered why the AG would oppose the bail,
especially when the Chinese had not been
officially charged under the Mineral and Mining
Act for which reason they should be remanded.

The judge stated that the AG must go back and put
their house in order because their opposition to
the bail had no legs to stand on, adding that the
AG could have amended the charge sheet.

Mr Akeweteh, for this reason, urged the court to
grant the suspects bail while the AG put their
case together, but the judge said the parties
ought to contain each other until May 23 when the
case is due for hearing.

The suspects worked as illegal miners at
Bepotenten in the Amansie West District of the
Ashanti Region.

At the time of their arrest, galamsey had been
outlawed by the government, through the Minister
of Lands and Natural Resources, John Peter Amewu.

Source -

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