FROM outside it looked like a legitimate chicken business, with a chicken run and even an advertising board on the outside wall.
But when cops received a tip-off and went to investigate, they couldn’t find any eggs or feathers.
The chicken run was hiding an entrance to a disused mine shaft. The shaft provided lots of space to sieve the soil and get the gold.
It appears that these zama zamas from Zuurbekom, west of Joburg, have been secretly conducting their illegal activities in comfort for months.
Bekkersdal cops pounced on Saturday and nabbed two zama zamas.
Police found a heap of soil and lots of equipment that the zama zamas were using to sieve the gold from the dust.
Residents told Daily Sun the area was littered with disused mine shafts and that they believed these shafts were connected to mines in the Westonaria area.
They said some of these old shafts were closed but zama zamas are opening them up to mine illegally.
Bekkersdal police spokeswoman Sergeant Linkie Lefakane said two Zimbabweans, aged between 20 and 21, were arrested.
“The cops received information and went to a plot in Zuurbekom on Saturday.
“The two suspects were found to have been running an illegal mining inside what seemed to be a chicken run.
“The equipment they used to carry out their operations was confiscated.
“The suspects will appear in court soon,” said Lefakane.