High-Stakes Fraud Uncovered at Fools Mine: Arrests Made, Court Appearance Today

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In a significant breakthrough in a complex web of alleged criminal activities, police have arrested several individuals connected to Shengan Mining (Pvt) Ltd. The accused, including Song Hui, Thabane Nhlane, and their Chinese translator Mr. Ding, Lui Song, are facing charges of fraud and forgery. They are set to appear in court today.

The arrest follows a detailed sworn statement by Mohammed Daka, a trustee and attorney for Fools Investment (Pvt) Ltd., which owns Fools Mine located in Hope Fountain, Bulawayo. According to Daka, the accused were involved in a series of illegal activities that included unauthorized company name changes, unlawful mining operations, and fraudulent acquisition of mining permits.

Illegal Operations and Deception

Daka’s statement outlines how the accused, operating under the guise of Shengan Mining, continued mining activities at Fools Mine despite the expiration of the special grant 5167 in May 2021. The mine was supposed to be non-operational, pending the renewal of the grant by the legal owner, Chinese investor Xu Xiaofei. However, the accused allegedly took advantage of the situation, engaging in illegal mining from February 2022 until April 2024.

In a shocking twist, Daka revealed that the mine’s operations were discovered by the Ministry of Mines inspector, Tshalibe, in February 2024, following a death report at the site. This led to an on-site inspection by Daka and another attorney, Munyaradzi Charakupa, where they found 16 Chinese and 12 Zimbabwean workers mining illegally.

Fraudulent Company Name Change and Permit Acquisition

Further investigations revealed that the company name was fraudulently changed from Fools Investment to Shengan Mining by Zhiyuan Wang, without the knowledge or consent of Xu Xiaofei. The accused allegedly reallocated shares and appointed new directors and shareholders in a bid to legitimize their illicit operations.

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The fraudulent activities did not end there. The accused reportedly acquired current carbon movement permits and an explosives storage license illegally, using the expired special grant 5167 of Fools Mine. These permits were crucial for the mining operations they carried out from January 2024.

Authorities Intervene

Upon realizing the extent of the illegal activities, Daka reported the matter to the Provincial Mining Director in Gwanda, who promptly issued an order to halt all mining operations at Fools Mine. The police from Matobo Police Station and the Mineral and Flora Unit in Plumtree enforced this order in April, effectively stopping the illegal operations.

Despite vacating the mine, the accused left behind significant damage to the property, including dismantled ball mills, and damaged vehicles, with losses amounting to over US$50,000.

Court Appearance

The accused persons’ blatant disregard for the law, combined with their fraudulent activities, has led to their arrest. They will face charges in court today, shedding light on the dark underbelly of illegal mining operations and the lengths to which some individuals will go to exploit resources unlawfully.

Mandla Ndlovu

Meet Mandla Ndlovu, our Editor-in-Chief at ZimScribes Online Magazine. With a passion for storytelling and a keen eye for diverse narratives, Mandla curates and leads our team in delivering captivating and thought-provoking content that celebrates the rich tapestry of Zimbabwe's culture, people, and experiences

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