The Ghana Police Serice has announced the arrest of six persons over the missing excavators and other equipment seized by operatives of Operation Vanguard.
The suspects have since been cautioned and are in police custody pending further investigations.
The police in a statement confirmed that the suspended New Patriotic Party (NPP) Central Regional Vice Chairman, Horace Ekow Ewusi together with five other accomplices have been arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID).
"Suspect Ekow Ewusi who was contracted to take custody of the seized equipment, was arrested on Monday, February 2, 2020, at Abelemkpe in Accra together with five (5) other accomplices namely: Frederick Ewusi, Joel Asamoah, Adnan Haruna, Frank Gyan and John Arhin," the statement said.
"Ekow Ewusi, Frederick Ewusi and Joel Asamoah have been cautioned on the offence of Stealing while Adnan Haruna, Frank Gyan and John Arhin have been cautioned on the offence of abetment of stealing".
The statement added that all suspects are in custody and assured the public that due processes will be followed.
It will be recalled that, at the peak of the fight against illegal mining between 2017 and 2018, many earth-moving machines said to be numbering about 500 were seized by the Operation Vanguard, an operational team made up of various security personnel purposely set up to clamp down on illegal mining.
The then sector Minister, Mr John Peter Amewu who sanctioned the seizure directed them to be parked at the premises of the various Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs).
Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology & Innovation and also Chairperson of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM), disclosed recently that most of the excavators that were seized from illegal miners had vanished.
The Concerned Small Scale Miners Association subsequently told the Minister that they knew where the missing excavators were.
Ekow Ewusi was contracted by the government to cart excavators and other vehicles and pieces of equipment seized by Operation Vanguard to designated areas for safekeeping.
Read a copy of the police statement on the arrests below;