Court grants 16 Chinese nationals bail over illegal mining

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A Federal High Court II sitting in Jos on Wednesday granted bail to 16 Chinese nationals who are being tried by the Federal Government for alleged illegal mining.

Nine other Nigerians and a miner, Abdullahi Adamu, alias Dan-China, also included in the suit, were granted bail by the presiding judge, Justice Musa Kurya, in the sum of N100 million, with two sureties in the position of a director in the state civil service.

The judge also ordered, as pre-conditions, that the sureties must drop their international passports with the court registrar, as well as that of all the accused persons, pending the determination of the case filed by the Attorney General (AG) of the Federation and Minister of Justice.

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The accused persons had through their counsel, Paul Erokoro, Joseph Danboyi and Gyang Zi, on Mach 28 filed for bail.

The Federal Government had on August 14, 2017, arrested Dan-China and 25 others and charged them before Justice Kurya, on a four-count charge of illegal mining at Zurak in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau.

The government alleged that the accused persons had sometimes between 2015 and 2017, made some illegal mining activities and disposing of the minerals, thereby committing offences punishable under the Miscellaneous Offences Act of Nigeria, 2004.

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The offences are also punishable under the Nigeria Minerals and Mining Act, 2007.

Justice Kurya adjourned the case to June 28, for definite hearing.