Filipino authorities have detained 18 Chinese men on suspicion of their involvement in an illegal black sand mining operation, SCMP reports. Filipino authorities and environmental groups have repeatedly accused illegal Chinese mining operations of destroying the nation’s coasts in search of magnetite and black sand, and these arrests are part of a larger nation-wide crackdown.
South China Morning Post reports:
“Nine Chinese nationals were burrowing and processing magnetite sand within the prohibited zone,” said [a justice department spokesperson].
The other nine were arrested at a nearby beach where they were building a magnetite processing plant, he added. […]
The justice department launched a third raid in the northern town of San Vicente on Saturday but found the site, previously operated by another Chinese outfit, had been abandoned, the official said.
The raid teams seized mining equipment from all three sites as well as 1,500 tonnes of magnetite concentrate from the Aparri operations, he added.
This is far from the first time that illegal Chinese miners have popped up outside of the country. Mining is, even legally, one of the most dangerous occupations on earth, and “illegal miner” must rank at the absolute bottom of any list of desirable careers.
[Image via PandAsinan]