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Gold mining tycoon Rob McEwen insists his company has no regular contact with local drug cartels in Mexico.
The CEO of McEwen Mining (MUX.N) was interviewed on BNN after armed robbers made away with 7,000 ounces of gold worth approximately $8.5 million US at its El Gallo 1 Mine last Tuesday.
The mine is located in western Sinaloa, which is controlled by a cartel of the same name.
In the interview, McEwen acknowledged that “the cartels are active” in the area but said “generally we have a good relationship with them.”
He now wants to clarify that statement, calling it “careless.”
"My answer was related to gaining access to properties we wish to explore,” McEwen wrote in a press release. “It is our policy to contact all property owners or impacted community members in an area to seek their permission and ascertain the appropriate timing to enter their properties to conduct mineral exploration.”
The interview has stirred Mexican media, which McEwen said has “created the entirely false impression” that the gold miner deals with criminals in the region. “This is simply not true,” he said.
In the release, McEwen thanked the Mexican Federal and State governments, law enforcement agencies and the army for their immediate response to the theft.
“We will continue to cooperate with them fully,” he said.