Police in Ngororero District have impounded a truck transporting two tonnes of amethyst stones that had been bought by unauthorised dealer.
Amethyst is a bright shining purple stone that is often used in pricey jewelry.
According to the Western Region Police Spokesperson, Chief Inspector of Police Theobald Kanamugire, the minerals had been bought from Sovu mineral concession by one Claudine Uwingabire, who is not a licensed dealer in minerals.
“The vehicle, plate number RAC 369 A, a Toyota Dyna type, was intercepted on Sunday and impounded at Ngororero Police station where the driver, Damascene Sindikubwabo, is also held as investigations continue,” Kanamugire said.
“The law is clear; for you to deal in mineral trade you have to be licensed or in possession of authorisation documents. The vehicle transporting the minerals should also bear supporting documents. We are also still searching for Uwingabire to be charged for the crime,” he added.
The development comes a month after Police also intercepted at least 173kg of untagged minerals in Rutsiro District.
In March, Police in Rulindo District also intercepted about 600kg of Wolfram that was being smuggled and arrested two people in connection with the illegal act.
“Mining is one of the major sources of Revenue for Rwanda; it’s the kind of business that has to be done in a clean manner and by authorised personnel. There are clear channels that have to be followed, and going against those guidelines means breaching the law, which we can’t allow,” CIP Kanamugire said.
He added that such are fraudulent dealings which are aimed at tax evasion.
Minerals are supposed to be tagged before they are transported by licensed dealers or companies.
Kanamugire said mining is also regulated to ensure standards and to protect the environment.