Aura Minerals Inc.
TSX : ORA

Aura Minerals Inc.

March 24, 2008 19:07 ET

Aura Minerals Provides Results and Corporate Update

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 24, 2008) - Aura Minerals Inc. ("Aura Minerals" or the "Company") (TSX:ORA) provides the following update on recent exploration results from its early stage gold projects in Para State, Brazil, and on corporate matters.

PARA PROPERTIES

Since the acquisition of the Arapiraca Project, the Company has focused its resources towards advancing this Project to a full feasibility study. The Cumaru, Inaja and North Carajas Projects (collectively, the "Para Properties") were held by the Company prior to the reverse takeover ("RTO") transaction through which the Company acquired the Arapiraca Project. Activities on the Para Properties since the RTO have included geological mapping, sampling and limited follow-up drilling to earlier 2006 drill campaigns. Based on the change of focus of the Company from exploration to mine development and in light of the limited exploration completed in 2007 on the Para Properties, the Company has decided to reconsider its options to realize value from the Para Properties.

The following provides an overview of each of the Para Properties, including current drill results.

Cumaru Project

In late 2007, a drilling campaign was completed on the Cumaru Project, which includes the Cumaru-Gradaus Property, and comprised 27 diamond drill holes for a total of 4,388 metres of core (see results in Table 1 attached). This campaign focused on the northern edge of the Cumaru granodiorite stock to test the source area for the large alluvial deposits mined by garimpeiros (artisanal miners) in the 1980's.

Holes CMD 1 to 19 tested the Gradaus, Mineiro, Daniel, Carmelo and Torneiro targets, which had been defined from previous artisanal workings and the Company's soil geochemistry and trenching programs. One significant intersection was obtained from hole CMD 02 (previously released on February 26, 2007) in the Gradaus target, which assayed 5.34 g/t Au over 13 metres. Mineralization in this hole is associated with up to 3% disseminated pyrite and veinlets of massive chalcopyrite and magnetite up to 1 centimetre in width. Gold appears to correlate closely with magnetite and chalcopyrite, and mineralization is encased in a broad zone of strongly pervasive phyllic and propylitic alteration. Five follow-up holes were drilled in the proximity of hole CMD 02 and intersected several narrow bands of mineralization over an area 100 metres x 200 metres. Subsequent magnetometry and induced polarization surveys over the granodiorite/greenstone contact confirmed that this mineralization produces magnetic and chargeability anomalies. These surveys also indicated the presence of a second anomaly in the Daniel target, which was tested by holes CMD 20 to 26. The results from this drilling campaign confirmed the presence of weak gold mineralization in sulphide-bearing veinlets in altered granodiorite. A significant follow-up drill campaign will be required to determine the mineralized systems in these target areas.

Inaja Project

The project covers the 100 kilometre long Inaja Greenstone Belt, a readily accessible but virtually unexplored Archean greenstone belt. Aura Minerals controls approximately 70 percent of the Inaja belt and has completed geological, geochemical and geophysical reconnaissance programs. This work defined a gold target at the eastern part of the belt and a nickel target at the western end of the belt.

The main gold target identified is a 12 kilometre-long northwest-trending structural lineament that is coincident with numerous artisanal gold workings. This lineament coincides closely with the regional contact between the greenstone sequence and a large intrusive body in the eastern part of the belt. Extensive artisanal workings, such as the famous Carrapato garimpo, occur near the contact zone. Significant quantities of gold were extracted by garimpeiros at Carrapato from the overlying alluvium and from quartz veining in bedrock along the trend. Initial field work suggested the possibility that stockwork systems along the trend may remain intact and prompted the design of a diamond drilling campaign, the first ever in the region. A total of 14 holes has now been completed along the Carrapato trend and an initial two holes in the Forquilha garimpo, for a total of 2,688 metres of drilling (see Table 2 attached). The Carrapato drill holes intercepted a series of narrow and discontinuous mineralized quartz veins along the trend. At the western part of the belt, exploration revealed a layered ultramafic sequence composed mainly of dunites overlain by soil with various nickel anomalies from soil and rock sampling over a strike extent of 5 kilometres and values of up to 9,000 ppm.

North Carajas Project

The North Carajas Project currently encompasses approximately 113,000 hectares in Para State. An initial regional reconnaissance program commenced in 2007 and is continuing into 2008. Where the program has indicated areas of low potential, the Company has dropped such areas in order to reduce holding costs. All areas of interest continue to be held by the Company.

QA/QC Procedures

Diamond drilling programs at the Para Properties were conducted by Geoserv Longyear and consisted of holes drilled with HQ-sized core (63.5 mm) in the oxidized saprolite zone, usually to a depth of 20 metres or less, and then stepping down to NQ-sized core (47.6 mm) in the fresh bedrock. The core is logged, photographed and then split in half. Half the core is retained on-site in a secure storage facility and the other half is sampled, secured in sealed, labeled bags and then transported by road to the SGS-Geosol Laboratorios Ltda. sample preparation facility in Paraupebas, Para State, Brazil. The entire half-core is crushed and pulverized and 150-gram splits of this pulp sent by SGS-Geosol to their main ISO-accredited assay laboratory in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais State, Brazil. At this laboratory, gold content is determined by fire assay with an atomic absorption finish using 50-gram splits of the pulp and selected intervals or samples are additionally analyzed for ICP multi-element analysis. The Company systematically inserts certified standard samples and blank samples in all batches of samples sent to SGS-Geosol as a means of quality control. Additionally, SGS-Geosol has its own stringent internal QA/QC protocols.

The Qualified Person under National Instrument 43-101 responsible for all technical data reported in this news release is Carlos H. Bertoni, P. Geo., Managing Director of Aura Minerals in Brazil.

RESTATEMENT OF Q3 2007 MD&A AND FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

The Company has restated, reissued and refiled on SEDAR the management discussion and analysis and interim consolidated financial statements for the three months ended September 30, 2007 and the period February 20, 2007 to September 30, 2007. The Company has reassessed some of the assumptions used in the determination of the purchase price in the RTO which occurred on July 17, 2007. The Company has determined that the stock options and warrants granted for the period between the transaction announcement and the acquisition date should not have been considered as part of the fair value determination as originally estimated. The Company has also applied a discount to the price of the shares outstanding on the date that the transaction was announced to give recognition to implied share issuance costs. The Company concluded that the purchase price should be amended. As a result, the Company has restated its interim consolidated financial statements as at and for the three months ended September 30, 2007 and for the period February 20, 2007 to September 30, 2007 to give effect to the correction of the purchase price at the acquisition date from $76,519,713 to $53,568,274. The significant changes to the financial statements result from these amendments to the purchase price on the acquisition of Aura Minerals by Clearwater Holdings Fund, LLC and the reversal of share capital. There was no impact on the results of operations for the three months ended September 30, 2007 and the period February 20, 2007 to September 30, 2007. A copy of the restated interim consolidated financial statements may be found on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

IMPAIRMENT CHARGE

During the third quarter, the Company accounted for the acquisition of the Arapiraca Project as a RTO with an effective date of July 17, 2007. Due to the accounting treatment of the RTO, the properties that existed in the Company's portfolio on July 16, 2007, the Para Properties, were subject to a purchase price allocation of $56.7 million, a $45.6 million increase over the carrying value of the properties prior to the RTO.

In accordance with the Company's significant accounting policies, management regularly reviews and evaluates the carrying value of each mineral property for impairment when events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amounts of the related asset may not be recoverable. Given the decision by management to focus efforts on the development of the Arapiraca Project and to decrease budgeted expenditures on further exploration activities on the Para Properties, the Company engaged an independent advisor to undertake a detailed value assessment of the Para Properties (the "Value Assessment"). The Value Assessment indicated that the full carrying amounts of the Para Properties were not recoverable. An impairment charge was therefore taken effective December 31, 2007 to reduce the carrying values to an amount that is consistent with the independent Value Assessment. The total impairment charge to the Para Properties was $33.6 million, decreasing their value at December 31, 2007 from $60.0 million to $26.4 million, details of which will be set out in the Company's annual audited consolidated financial statements for the period February 20, 2007 to December 31, 2007, to be released on or before March 30, 2008.

ABOUT AURA MINERALS INC.

Aura Minerals is a Canadian exploration company focused on the acquisition and development of mineral deposits in Brazil and the rest of South America with an emphasis on developing the polymetallic Arapiraca Project in north eastern Brazil. The Arapiraca Project, which was originally explored in the 1980's and 1990's for copper and gold, also contains magnetite (up to 50%) and nickel which have not yet been evaluated. The Company plans to evaluate the Arapiraca Project for copper, gold, nickel and iron, all of which can be readily extracted. The nearby infrastructure is excellent with ready access to electricity, water and shipping ports. Aura Minerals' other projects are the Cumaru, the Inaja Greenstone Belt and the North Carajas claims in the Carajas Metallogenic Province of north central Brazil.

Cautionary Statement:

This news release contains forward-looking statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results, performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements include those risks set out in Aura Minerals' public documents filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Although Aura Minerals believes that the assumptions and factors used in preparing the forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on these statements, which only apply as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such events will occur in the disclosed time frames or at all. Aura Minerals disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.



Table 1 - Cumaru Drill Results

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total
Length From To Interval Au
Hole # Target (metres) (metres) (metres) (metres) (g/t)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0001 Gradaus 160.10 147.0 148.0 1.0 4.50
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0002 Gradaus 160.10 61.0 74.0 13.0 5.30
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
86.0 89.0 3.0 2.40
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
106.0 107.0 1.0 2.30
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
120.0 122.0 2.0 0.70
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0003 Gradaus 160.10 74.0 75.0 1.0 0.80
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0004 Gradaus 159.80 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0005 Gradaus 161.65 53.0 55.0 2.0 0.56
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
90.0 92.0 2.0 0.75
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0006 Gradaus 184.30 58.0 61.0 3.0 1.80
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
157.0 160.0 3.0 1.50
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0007 Daniel 157.07 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0008 Daniel 163.35 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0009 Daniel 157.37 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0010 Gradaus 190.40 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0011 Gradaus 151.40 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0012 Gradaus 160.40 62.0 64.0 2.0 0.54
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
67.0 68.0 1.0 2.11
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0013 Gradaus 163.40 71.0 72.0 1.0 2.80
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
79.0 80.0 1.0 2.10
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
121.0 122.0 1.0 2.15
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
129.0 134.0 5.0 1.71
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0014 Carmelo 198.55 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0015 Carmelo 176.35 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0016 Carmelo 160.40 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0017 Carmelo 130.20 14.0 15.0 1.0 0.80
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0018 Torneiro 184.30 163.0 164.0 1.0 0.53
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0019 Daniel 154.20 104.0 111.0 7.0 4.10
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0020 Daniel 166.50 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0021 Daniel 175.30 37.7 38.5 0.8 2.22
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0022 Daniel 154.60 64.0 65.0 1.0 1.36
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
84.0 85.0 1.0 0.83
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
112.0 113.0 1.0 0.80
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0023 Daniel 151.25 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0024 Daniel 151.30 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0025 Daniel 153.55 113.0 114.0 1.0 4.04
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0026 Daniel 151.30 57.0 58.0 1.0 1.26
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
CMD0027 Daniel 151.30 66.0 67.0 1.0 2.58
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total drilled (m) 4,388.54
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
NSV equals no significant values


Table 2 - Inaja Drill Results

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total
Length From To Interval Au
Hole # Target (metres) (metres) (metres) (metres) (g/t)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0001 Carrapato 153.40 15.00 17.00 2.00 2.21
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
37.00 38.50 1.50 3.05
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
49.50 51.25 1.75 1.07
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
82.00 83.00 1.00 7.60
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
127.00 131.00 4.00 0.73
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0002 Carrapato 250.00 66.00 67.00 1.00 1.57
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
103.00 104.00 1.00 0.54
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
151.00 152.00 1.00 1.08
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
162.50 167.50 5.00 1.02
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
184.00 186.00 2.00 0.69
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
227.00 232.70 5.70 0.58
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0003 Carrapato 151.10 45.00 48.10 3.10 8.16
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0004 Carrapato 151.10 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0005 Carrapato 163.00 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0006 Carrapato 250.20 113.00 114.00 1.00 1.23
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
128.00 130.00 2.00 3.02
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0007 Carrapato 163.10 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0008 Carrapato 100.00 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0009 178.30 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0010 Carrapato 160.25 14.00 15.00 1.00 0.71
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0011 Carrapato 151.30 45.00 46.45 1.45 0.74
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
53.00 54.00 1.00 0.58
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
59.00 68.50 9.50 0.68
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
77.00 78.00 1.00 0.61
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
92.90 95.00 2.10 2.33
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
99.30 102.80 3.50 2.20
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0012 Carrapato 160.05 107.20 108.15 0.95 3.70
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
111.25 112.00 0.75 0.71
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
137.00 138.00 1.00 0.93
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
144.90 145.40 0.50 9.07
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0013 Carrapato 133.35 45.00 46.00 1.00 0.52
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
49.35 50.20 0.85 2.48
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
86.00 87.00 1.00 1.21
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
98.00 98.75 0.75 0.70
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-CR-FD-0014 Carrapato 220.30 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-FO-FD-0001 Forquilha 151.10 NSV
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
IN-FO-FD-0002 Forquilha 151.05 84.00 85.00 1.00 2.35
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total drilled (m) 2,687.60
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
NSV equals no significant values


The TSX does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release, which has been prepared by management.

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