The Anti Illegal Mining Squad of the Police in Zamfara has arrested and prosecuted 18 people who engaged in illegal mining in spite of presidential order banning the activity.

SP Shehu Mohammed, Police Public Relations Officer of the command,said this in a statement on Friday in Gusau.

Mohammed said the anti illegal mining team led by SP Murtala Bello, was assigned by the force headquarters Abuja to enforce the presidential order banning illegal mining in the state.

“The recent operations conducted by the anti illegal mining team was at Yan Kaura mining site in Maru local government area where villagers from different parts of the state converged and embarked on illegal mining.

“The assigned squad mobilised and successfully dislodged the violators where 18 suspects were arrested.

“Discreet investigation was conducted after which all the suspects were charged to court and they are now in prison custody,” Mohammed said.

According to him, numerous exhibits were recovered, which includes; 504 bags of different chemicals used in refining gold, one Lexus Jeep, one Meter Director, one Professional Digital Table Top Scale and 14 bags of processing sand suspected to be gold.

He said the squad, which commenced operations since September 2020, had raided several illegal mining sites at different locations in the state and succeeded in arresting many notorious illegal miners.

He further said the sites raided to included major illegal mining sites at Kwali, Bukkuyum local government area, Daki Takwas, Gummi local government area as well as Zugu and Wawan Icce in Anka local government area of Zamfara.

He appealed to members of the public to alert the nearest security outfit on any illegal mining activity in their area, adding that the squad would continue to arrest illegal miners in all parts of the state.