With illegal mining at the abandoned Gold Mine near Matsiloje seemingly rife, police pounced on three suspected offenders in the village last week.
Acting on a tip-off, the boys in blue believe they struck gold in their raid, reportedly catching the trio with a lump of rock thought to contain traces of the precious mineral.
The cops rounded up two locals: Mooketse Motlhabe, 30, and Bokamoso Lekalake, 26, as well as a 27-year-old Zimbabwean man, Vusi Moyo.
Unable to produce a passport or identity card, Moyo was hit with an additional charge of entering the country illegally.
It was a charge that ultimately cost the foreigner his freedom as, deemed a flight risk, he was remanded in custody while his two co-accused were granted bail during Tuesday’s brief arraignment before Francistown Magistrates Court.
Trying his best to be spared a stint in the slammer, a desperate Moyo told the Magistrate he has young children who are home alone back in Zim, as their mother is away in Bulawayo working as a house maid.
However, his sob story couldn’t save him from prison, where he will remain for at least two weeks, with the next mention set for 15 August.
Meanwhile, the suspected gold has been sent for forensic analysis.