Thursday, April 18, 2024

Court orders Aisha Huang to answer to galamsey charges, dismisses submission of no case to answer

This was after the Court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo held that, a prima facie case has been proven against her by the State.

Ms Huang is currently facing three counts of undertaking a mining operation without a licence, facilitating the participation of persons engaged in a mining operation and the illegal employment of foreigners.

On May 3, she changed her plea on the fourth count – entering Ghana while she had been prohibited from re-entry and has since been convicted on that charge with her sentencing deferred to at the end of the trial of the remaining charges.

The Prosecution on May 3, closed their case after parading 11 witnesses.

Ruling on a submission of no case to answer, Justice Osei Marfo said the elements of prima facie have been proven by the Witnesses paraded by the State.

The court said, on the face of the charges it was clear that an illegal mining activities have been taken at Bepotenten in the Amansie West District in Ashanti Region.

The court also ruled that, the said illegal mining activities were done without license or authority from the sector minister.

Justice Lydia Osei Marfo after making referencing the appropriate mining laws under which she was charged ordered Aisha Huang to open his defence and answer to the charges.

According to EIB Network’s Legal Affairs Correspondent, Murtala Inusah, the court has directed Aisha Huang to file her witness statements by July 3.

Prosecution Witnesses

According to EIB Network’s Legal Affairs
Correspondent, Murtala Inusah, who has compiled the witnesses who testified in the case from November 9, 2022, said, they included farmers, land and concession owners, an assemblyman, immigration officers and police investigators.

Below are the Prosecution Witnesses, (PW), and the chronology of how each of them appeared before the Criminal Division of the Accra High Court presided over by Justice Lydia Osei Marfo.

PW1. Reuben Ransford Aborabora, a Superintendent of Immigration, GIS



PW2. David Essien, a Superintendent of Immigration, Ghana Immigration Service

PW3. Nana Sarfo Prempeh, Director of Volta Resources Limited, who is also a Divisional Chief at Asante Akyem Agogo Traditional Area.

PW4. Albert Appiah, a farmer at Bepotenten, Ashanti Region.

PW5. Timothy Teye Ali, a farmer at Bepotenten, Ashanti region.

PW6. Peter Amenya, a farmer at Bepotenten, Ashanti Region

PW7. Matthew Kwabla Abotsi, assemblyman for Bepotenten Electoral Area.

PW8. ASP Charles Adaba (Rtd), a Police Investigator.

PW9. Daniel Afrifa Adu, Assistant Superintendent of Immigration

PW10. Inspector Simon Nyaho, a Police investigator.

PW11. Devine Ahuma Ocansey, a Superintendent of Immigration.

Brief facts

Per the brief facts of the case as narrated to the Court by Detective Chief Inspector Frederick Sarpong were that, the Complainants in the case are Security and Intelligence officers based in Accra.

He said, all the accused are Chinese nationals who have gained notoriety for engaging in series of small-scale mining activities known as ‘galamsey’ across the country.

The prosecutor said, during the year 2017, the 1st Accused (Aisha Huang) was arrested for similar offence but managed to sneak out of the country averting prosecution.

Detective Chief Inspector Sarpong said, during the early part of 2022, the 1st Accused sneaked back into the country after having changed the details on her Chinese passport.

The Prosecutor said, the 1st Accused again resumed small-scale mining activities without licence and together with 2nd, 3rd and 4th Accused persons engaged in the sale and the purchase in Accra without valid authority granted as required by the Minerals and Mining Act.

He stated that the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Accused persons are also into the sale of equipment used in illegal mining activities.

They were subsequently arrested upon Intelligence while further investigations have commenced.

Source: Inusah