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Zimbabwe mining boss arrested for alleged gold smuggling

[HARARE] Zimbabwe police on Monday arrested the boss of a miners' federation, formerly CEO of the football association, for allegedly trying to smuggle 6kg of gold out of the country.

Henrietta Rushwaya, 53, president of the Zimbabwe Miners Federation was busted at the main international airport in Harare with the precious mineral in her bag as she checked in for a flight to Dubai.

Police said the gold is valued at around US$366,000 (S$498,300).

In a tweet, the police said Rushwaya was nabbed after "scanners at the airport checkpoint indicated that there was something in her hand luggage".

"Searches revealed that the suspect had 6.09kg of gold which had not been legally and properly cleared with customs and relevant offices for export," police said.

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"This is a suspected smuggling case," they added.

Rushwaya leads the federation which represents mainly small-scale and artisanal miners.

The former CEO of the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) is expected in court on Tuesday.

Her arrest comes at a time authorities are battling a wave of gold smuggling, running into tens of millions of dollars each month.

Home Affairs Minister Kazembe Kazembe last month said the country was losing nearly US$100 million worth of gold illicitly taken out of the country each month.

AFP

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