KINSHASA, Congo (AP) — A Belgian company supplied the bulldozers that destroyed hundreds of homes near a mine in southeastern Congo and lied about it for years with the help of a government cover-up, Amnesty International said in a report released Monday.

The demolitions began in 2009 near a copper and cobalt mine in Katanga province and were carried out by the police with help by Enterprise General Malta Forrest, a subsidiary of the Belgian firm Groupe Forrest International, said the report, which draws on satellite imagery, video footage and criminal files.

"There is now overwhelming and irrefutable evidence showing that the forced evictions that Groupe Forrest International has denied for years in fact took place," said Audrey Gaughran, Amnesty's global issues director.

In a statement responding to the report, GFI said Monday that the evictions were "regrettable and unacceptable" but were the fault of the police, not the company.

"These grave allegations are baseless and are not supported by the facts ... Groupe Forrest refutes them completely," the statement said. "Its subsidiaries and employees always act in an ethical and responsible manner."

The police operation was ostensibly intended to clear out small-scale miners stealing from the mine but Amnesty said the evidence indicates that hundreds of people including longtime residents were evicted.

Government spokesman Lambert Mende expressed surprise at the findings.

"Amnesty International cannot be more royalist than the king," Mende said. "It should let justice do its work like in any law-abiding state."

The report, however, states that while a prosecutor investigated the demolitions, provincial officials and officials in Kinshasa, the capital, ordered that no charges be filed.