It seems that Canadian gold mining company, Bandera Gold Ltd. (CVE:BGL), has been caught up in an elaborate scam. In 2005 Bandera paid $6.5 million to Mexican mining firm Minera San Jorge for a 60% stake in the two Cinco Minas mines located outside Guadalajara, but never received the paperwork proving their stake.
Southridge Minerals, subsidiary of a parent company with a dubious past, Southridge Enterprises, had also claimed ownership of the mines, displaying their concession certificate on their website. However Southridge’s involvement with the mine has come under great suspicion after an independent report by International Safety and Security Firm exposed with video and photographic evidence that “the Cinco Minas mine, equipment, and mill has been completely non-operational for some time (presumably many years)”. This runs contrary to Southridge’s website which shows video of a mine busy with activity.
The former Chief Executive of Southridge Enterprises, Alex Smid, has been touted by pinkinvesting.com as a “seasoned criminal involved with the Mexican and Russian Mafia whose unscrupulous practices date back to 1980, his criminal feats include extortion, blackmail, loan sharking, counterfeiting, prime bank fraud, and identity fraud”. Smids current location is unknown.