BURERA: Illegal mineral dealer intercepted with over 1,200kgs of wolfram

Rwanda National Police (RNP), on Saturday, December 11, arrested a suspected illegal mineral dealer identified as Isaac Masengesho, in Kagogo Sector, Burera District with 1,282kgs of smuggled Wolfram.

The minerals had been smuggled into Rwanda from the neighbouring Uganda, Burera District Police Commander, Superintendent of Police (SP) Aphrodis Nkundineza, said.

“A resident called the Police to report Masengesho after seeing him transporting heavy sacks from the border with Uganda to his home, which is about 3kms from the borderline,” SP Nkurunziza said.

He added: “In response to the call, Police went to Masengesho’s home, searched the house and recovered sacks of wolfram minerals hidded in a hole, which he dug in one of the quarters.”

Following his arrest, Masengesho indeed said that smuggled them into Rwanda from Uganda. He further alleged that the minerals belong to a man, whom he only identified as Christophe, living in Rubavu District.

The DPC reminded the public that engaging in mining operations and trade requires an official license and warned that anyone involving in such illegal practices will be arrested.

He equally thanked the resident, who shared information leading to the arrest of the suspect and seizure of the minerals.

Masengesho along with the minerals were handed over to RIB at Cyanika station for further investigation while the search of anyone connected to this criminal act is still ongoing .

Article 54 of the law N° 58/2018 of 13/08/2018 on mining and quarry operations, states that; any person, who undertakes mineral or quarry exploration, exploitation, processing or trading without a licence, commits an offence.

Upon conviction, the offender is liable to imprisonment for a term of between two and six months and a fine of not less than Frw1 million and not more than Frw5 million or only one of these penalties.

The court also orders confiscation of any seized minerals or quarry in storage, trading or processing without a license.

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