Australian lawyer detained in Mongolia

By Megan Malloy

25 October 2012 at 12:43 BST

The in-house lawyer of a mining company has been prevented from leaving Mongolia after being detained at the airport last week.

Mongolia: Australian lawyer detained

Sarah Armstrong, who works for SouthGobi Resources, a subsidiary of mining company Rio Tinto, is receiving assistance from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs who are accompanying her during questioning. ABC News interviewed the attaché of the Mongolian embassy in Canberra who said that Ms Armstrong was a witness in a case alleging unpaid tax by a mining company.

Meeting the authorities

Ms Armstrong is permitted to move within Mongolia freely and has not been charged with any wrongdoing under the investigation by Mongolia’s Independent Authority Against Corruption.

‘The authorities in Ulan Bator are seeking to interview her further--not, I’m advised, about any allegations against her, but about a complex matter between the company she works for, the resources authority of Mongolia, and the Mongolia anticorruption authority,’ said Dave Lawson, Australia’s consul-general in Mongolia, who has met with Ms Armstrong and plans to accompany her to meet with the authorities, reported.


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