Two die in illegal gold mine near Tahoe project in Peru

miércoles 27 de mayo de 2015 14:06 GYT

LIMA May 27 (Reuters) - A 17-year-old boy and a 21-year-old man working in an illegal gold mine in northern Peru near Tahoe Resources Inc Shahuindo project died after inhaling noxious fumes 500 feet underground, a public prosecutor said on Wednesday.

At least one other wildcat miner has died in the illegal gold mining hub known as La Chilca on the Shahuindo concession in recent years, said public prosecutor Miguel Angel Carmona.

"Illegal miners have practically usurped the land there to extract ore," said Carmona.

Tahoe Resources did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Shahuindo was acquired by Tahoe Resources in February.

The gold project is scheduled to start production in January 2016. Annual output is estimated at 90,000 ounces.

Peruvian authorities have been unable to control illegal gold mining, which employs tens of thousands of people across Peru and has been linked with child labor, prostitution, human trafficking and pollution.

Illegal gold mines the Peruvian Amazon have destroyed large swaths of rainforest and dumped tonnes of mercury in rivers.

A bid to formalize wildcat miners has faced years of delays. (Reporting by Mitra Taj; Editing by Dan Grebler)