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BURERA: Five Arrested With 650kgs Of Smuggled Minerals

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Security organs in Burera District, on Sunday, May 22, foiled a group of 20 men, which was attempting to smuggle 650kgs of Wolfram into Rwanda from Uganda.

Superintendent of Police (SP) Alex Ndayisenga, the Northern Region Political and Civic Education Officers (RPCEO) said that five of the smugglers were arrested. Other 15 fled back to Uganda.

This group had crossed into Rwanda with 13 sacks of Wolfram weighing 650kgs using an illegal border point in Rukoro Village, Kayenzi Cell in Kagogo Sector.

“There was prior information that this group had earlier on Sunday at about 8pm, crossed to Uganda through a porous border to bring minerals. The group returned back at about midnight with 13 sacks of minerals and they were intercepted after they crossed into Rwanda,” SP Ndayisenga explained.

The group was allegedly hired by an illegal mineral dealer in Burera to smuggle the minerals from Uganda.

“The suspects and the seized minerals were handed over to RIB at Cyanika station but the search for the said rightful owner of the minerals is still underway,” the RPCEO said.

He commended the role of communities living along the borderlines in fighting cross-border crimes.

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 Rwf5million 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.