Top geologists arrested in Mutare
© RUSSIAN mining corporate Alrosa’s top geologists have been arrested for illegally prospecting for gold in the Nyanga National Park as they washed gold ore in Nyangombe River.
Tension Hlatini, 36, and Igor Shmakov, 49 — who are employed as a geologist and chief geologist respectively — were not asked to plead when they appeared before Nyanga magistrate Constance Marutya.
They have applied for bail pending their trial. They are being charged with prospecting for gold without a licence.
According to State papers, Hlatini and Shmakov were arrested by Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority ranger Jameson Kambewa on January 3. The duo was washing their gold ore at a section of Nyangombe River that is within the national park.
Hlatini and Shmakov were asked to produce prospecting licences which they failed to do, leading to their arrest.
They were in possession of a shovel, wrench, four kintest sieve set, silver bowl, plastic sieve, gold pan, 24-inch iron bar, geological hammer, machete, mortar and pestle, pick, axe, store bars, 1,5 metre wooden stick, wooden sleeve, wooden pan, gloves, brown bag with spares, green bowl and blue and purple sacks as well as 363kgs of mineral ore. The two were taken to ZRP Nyanga where a police report was filed.