Police arrest 55 for illegal mining

2012-12-14 15:17

Johannesburg - Police have arrested 55 alleged illegal miners after two corpses were found at Nasrec, Gauteng police said on Friday.

Police were alerted on Thursday and went to the scene and found the bodies of two men aged between 20 and 40, said Lieutenant Colonel Katlego Mogale.

While at the scene, police saw miners emerge from beneath the ground.

Mogale said the arrested men claimed they were mining gold and that they were being held captive by other people underground.

It is not known whether they have any connection to the two dead men.
Police are investigating.

The miners are due to appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court soon.

  • avanwyk2 - 2012-12-14 15:46

    The police are improving....only 2 people dead.

  • brendan.healey.315 - 2012-12-14 15:58

    So they just carried on working with two dead men lying there.... only in Africa ! F...king hilarious SA really has become a free for all...

      stirer.kathray - 2012-12-14 18:45

      And what would you expect them to do? Take their hats off, bow their heads and let the world pass them by? The dead men aren't going to run away, and a crime was in progress. You find it hilarious that they do their jobs? I find it amazing that the two policemen managed to arrest 55 miners.

  • John - 2012-12-14 19:25

    Under what law is illegal mining?

  • John - 2012-12-14 21:09

    Are they stealing something? Are they trespassing on abandoned property? What is the crime? They are simply working to survive. Should they starve instead? At least they are not robbing raping or stealing from US!

      nicholas.hannaway.3 - 2012-12-14 22:56

      John, I see you're very vocal on the mining issue. Fact is you have to pay the government large amounts to secure mining rights and then further still the mining industry is one of the most taxed industries. they are also made (supposedly) to adhere to strict health and safety regulations. On top of this, we all criticize our countries employers on issues such as occupational health and safety at the workplace. These guys clearly weren't following any regulations (on top of illegally entering a mine). Its tragic that 2 lives have been lost, and though they weren't stealing or raping, what they were doing is illegal and it resulted in fatalities. Laws are there for a reason.

      John - 2012-12-14 23:36

      Nicholas, thanks for the info. I want to know what law, act, or statute they are arrested for. What is the charge? If they are self employed then surely the mine regulations and rules do not apply. I do not think that goverment owns mining rights to sell. These are held by the original corporate polluters who have abandoned operations and left these dangerous conditions behind. Who decided that I am not allowed to dig a hole in my yard and pull some gold out?

      nicholas.hannaway.3 - 2012-12-15 20:24

      We're both speculating on exactly which laws apply to mining and can't quote any specific legislation, I'll have to google it. I have in the past noticed in the papers when mining rights ere awarded to certain companies, but i don't think there is anything stopping you from digging in your backyard. I empathize with the plight of disenfranchised workers, but what applies to one applies to all. The mining companies spend plenty money (of which they aren't short) to sink and secure shafts. You and I didn't spend anything on it and shouldn't be allowed to jump in and start our own operation. Perhaps the government should develop their own mining company to see whether they can operate as efficiently as the major mining operators.

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