ACACIA executives’ 10tri/- fraud case investigation ‘not complete’

THE prosecution has asked for more time to complete investigation into 10tri/-fraud, tax evasion and money laundering trial involving seven people, including senior officials with four subsidiary companies of defunct Acacia Mining Limited.

Senior State Attorney, Wankyo Simon told Resident Magistrate Vick Mwaikambo at the Kisutu Resident Magistrates’ Court in Dar es Salaam yesterday that investigation into the matter had not been completed.

“In the circumstances, your honour, we pray for another mention date pending further investigation,” the trial attorney requested. The magistrate granted the request and adjourned the case until March 13, 2020.

The accused include the president of Pangea Minerals Limited, Bulyanhulu Gold Mine Limited and North Mara Gold Mine Limited, as well as Exploration Minieres Du Nord LTEE, Deogratias Mwanyika and Managing Director of the three companies Asa Mwaipopo. Others are Bulyanhulu Company Relations Manager, Alex Lugendo and the four mineral dealer companies.

They are facing 39 counts of conspiracy to commit offences, leading an organised crime, forgery of documents and uttering false documents. Other charges include corrupt transaction, tax evasion of $918,464,427 (about 1,8tri/-) and $3,791,194,540 (about 7.4tri/-) money laundering.

It is alleged that the accused committed the offences between April 2004 and July 2018 in various places in Dar es Salaam, Shinyanga, Mara and Kagera in Tanzania and various places in South Africa, Canada, on Barbados Island and in the United Kingdom (UK).

Within the same period and places, Mwanyika, Lugendo and Mwipopo with other persons not in court are alleged to have knowingly furnished assistance in the management of business of a criminal racket with intent to reap profit or other benefits.

The same accused are charged with forging two loan agreements and a loan confirmation statement purporting Pangea Mineral Limited agreed to borrow $90m with interests from Barrick International Bank Corp and Exploration Minieres Du Nord LTEE.

It is alleged further that the accused also purported to show that Exploration Minieres Du Nord LTEE secured a loan amounting to $6,744,974.62 from the bank, while they knew such transactions were false. Within the same period and places, Mwanyika, Lugendo and Mwipopo and other persons not in court, allegedly counselled and facilitated the four mineral companies to acquire or transfer $1,896,007,270, which is the proceeds of predicate offences of forgery and tax evasion.

The prosecution alleged that the mineral companies, jointly and together with other persons not in court, acquired and directly engaged in transactions involving the amount of money, while they knew or ought to have known that such property was the proceeds of forgery and tax evasion offences. 

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