Colombia’s Comptroller has accused Alabama-based mining company Drummond of withholding $50 million in royalties from Colombia’s government over 10 years.
The Comptroller’s office announced Monday night that the mining conglomerate has had a fraudulent agreement that has exempted the company from paying millions of dollars of royalties and taxes to the Colombian state.
Colombia’s fiscal watchdog ordered the National Mining Agency to review these charges and the agreements that Drummond currently has in place in order to further verify their allegations.
It appears as though the state has unknowingly allowed the mining company to deduct the royalties in question amidst social investments in transport infrastructure, according to local media.
Drummond and the National Mining Agency were alerted on Tuesday morning, reported news media outlet CM&.
The multinational mining company has been a magnet for controversy this year. Drummond miners were among those who participated in national strikes in August and September, which led to a controversial deal brokered in part by the government. Also in 2013, Drummond had to deal with sanctions after dumping coal deposits and waste off of Colombia’s shores.
Drummond’s mines extract coal and are located in the northern state of Cesar and the Caribbean state of Magdalena.