90 criminal rings busted for illegal sand mining in Yangtze
Chinese police have busted 90 gang- and violence-related criminal rings in a crackdown targeting forces involved in illegal sand mining along the Yangtze River, according to the Ministry of Public Security Thursday.
Guo Lin, spokesperson with the ministry, said that so far in the yearlong crackdown, which started in January, police have solved 1,667 criminal cases involving more than 1.79 billion yuan (about US$252 million).
Over 2.88 million cubic meters of sand illegally excavated had been seized, according to Guo.
The spokesperson said the campaign involves police forces from 10 provincial-level regions as well as the Yangtze River Shipping Public Security Bureau.
Illegal sand dredging is regarded as a major threat to the ecology and navigation safety of waterways.