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Galamsey queen Aisha Huang jailed four years

The high court in Accra has convicted, fined, and sentenced En Huang, aka Aisha Huang, to four years in prison for undertaking mining operations without a licence and for entering the Ghanaian jurisdiction while prohibited from re-entry.

She was also fined a total of four thousand (4,000) penalty units which is equivalent to forty-eight thousand Ghana cedis  (GHC48,000).

Lawyers of Ms Huang ahead of her sentencing, prayed for the court to impose a fine and also asked that she should be deported because she has been in prison custody for the last year and two months throughout her trial.

However, the Director of Public Prosecutor (DPP), Yvonne Atakora Buabisa, on her part said the state has used valuable resources throughout the case, which has gone through a full trial. The DPP further noted that the penalty, as stated in the law, is a fine, a custodial sentence, or both.

“In light of the fact that Aisha Huang’s activities had a lot of socioeconomic impact on the community, the witnesses who testified and their families, the state wishes to request that the court imposes both a fine and a custodial sentence on the accused person.

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“The state is thus asking the court to impose the maximum fine, the maximum sentence, and subsequently, a deportation order after she has served the term of imprisonment imposed on her” the Director of Public Prosecution said in open court.

By court

Justice Lydia Osei Marfo’s court, in sentencing the convict, said the state in the course of the trial, adduced sufficient evidence to show that the accused, Aisha Huang, undertook mining operations in Ghana without the required licensing regime.

The court therefore convicted Aisha Huang of all the four charges leveled against her by the Attorney General. Additionally, the court imposed a deportation order on Aisha Huang which comes into effect as soon as she finishes serving her sentence in Ghana.

Background

The Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, took over the file of “Aisha” En Huang, from the police in November 2022, after she was found and rearrested in Ghana several years after she was deported from the country.

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The AG subsequently slapped her with four charges for which she was tried. Throughout her trial, Aisha Huang was denied bail and was remanded in prison custody.

Charges

The first charge against En Huang was “undertaking a mining operation without a licence contrary to Section 99(2)(a) of the Minerals and Mining Act 2006 (Act 703) as amended by the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) Act 2019 (Act 995)”.

The state’s argument in respect of the first charge was that “on or before February 2015 and May 2017 … without a licence from the minister responsible for mines”, Aisha Huang “undertook mining operations at Bepotenten in the Amansie Central District of the Ashanti Region”.

The second charge was “facilitating the participation of persons engaged in a mining operation contrary to Sections 99 (2)(a) & (3) of the Minerals and Mining Act 2006 (Act 703) as amended by the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) Act 2019 (Act 995)”.

For this charge, the state contended that between February 2015 and May 2017 En Huang Aisha, a Chinese national, facilitated the participation of Gao Jin Cheng, Lu Qi Jun, Haibin Gao and Zhang Zhipeng in mining operations at Bepotenten in the Amansie Central District of the Ashanti Region without a licence from the minister responsible for mines to conduct such mining operations.

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The third count on the charge sheet was “illegal employment of foreign nationals contrary to Section 24 of the Immigration Act 2000 (Act 573)”.

The state contends that in May 2017, En Huang Aisha illegally employed four Chinese nationals, namely Gao Jin Cheng, Lu Qi Jun, Haibin Gao and Zhang Zhipeng, to work at an illegal mining site in the Amansie Central District of the Ashanti Region.

The last charge is “entering Ghana while prohibited from re-entry contrary to Section 20(4) of the Immigration Act 2000 (Act 573)”, with the state contending that on 2 September 2022 En Huang was arrested in Kumasi and found to have re-entered Ghana when she knew she had been barred from entering Ghana.

Source: Asaaseradio

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