Two young men who were caught mining for gold nuggets in the Tano-Anwia Forest Reserve have been granted bail in the sum of 10,000 Ghana cedis each by the District Magistrate court in Enchi.
They are; Lawrence Appiah alias owner, a 20 year-old student and Mathias Oppong Gyan, an excavator operator, 23.
The two pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit crime, entering forest reserve without permit and mining for gold without license.
They are expected to make their next appearance in court on July 7, 2020 for judgment.
Prosecuting, Detective Inspector Joseph Kwadwo Agyare, told the court presided over by his Mr Eric Baah Boateng that the complainant Emmanuel Nkansah is a Range Supervisor of the Ghana Forestry Commission, Enchi.
The accused persons are residents of Mooseaso near Asankrangwa in the Wassa Amenfi West Municipality of the Western Region.
At about 0605 hours, on August 8, 2019, the accused persons and others now at large, unlawfully sneaked into the Tano Anwia Forest Reserve to prospect for gold, the prosecutor said.
According to Detective Agyare, the complainant and his team who were on their usual patrol duty in the said Forest Reserve, spotted the accused persons and their accomplice’s at large using shovels, pickaxe and metal detector machines in their operations.
Appiah, Gyan and their colleagues upon seeing the complainant abandoned their tools and bolted, but he pursued them with his team and they managed to apprehend the accused persons, he narrated to the court.
He said the accused persons were handed over to the Enchi police together with the exhibits they retrieved from them.