San Juan, Argentina — Barrick Gold failed to complete improvements to the Veladero mine in Argentina that could have prevented the third spill of cyanide solution in 18 months, leading to eventual sanctions for the world’s biggest gold miner, a judge says. Barrick appeared to have missed deadlines on three orders from local authorities, including replacing pipes, before the spill on March 28, said Pablo Oritja, the judge overseeing cases related to Veladero in the town of Jachal, where "Barrick out" graffiti lines the streets. "If they had changed pipes as ordered, the decoupling [of pipes] would not have occurred," Oritja told Reuters on Friday, the day after meeting the head of the mining police in western Argentina’s San Juan province, where Veladero and Jachal are located. The findings "will eventually end in sanctions against the company", said Oritja. The investigation into negligence, along with the provincial government’s review of Barrick’s mine improvement plan, could dela...

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