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Santacruz Announces NI 43-101 Resource at San Felipe

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwire) -- 07/16/12 -- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. ("Santacruz" or the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:SCZ) is pleased to announce an update regarding its activities in Mexico at the San Felipe project, including an initial independent National Instrument 43-101 ("NI 43-101") Mineral Resource estimate. The Mineral Resource estimate was completed by Kelsey Zabrusky under the supervision of Zachery Black SME-RM and Donald E. Hulse PE and SME-RM, of Gustavson Associates, LLC, (Gustavson) both of whom are independent "qualified persons" under NI 43-101.

Highlights are as follows:


--  Measured and Indicated Resources of 39mm oz AgEq; Inferred Resources of
    11mm oz AgEq. 
--  Resources are defined on only 3 of 8 known veins (La Ventana, San Felipe
    and Las Lamas). 
--  These three primary veins remain open along strike in at least one
    direction and to depth. 
--  Excellent potential to expand resources at Las Lamas, Cornucopia,
    Artemisa, Santa Rosa and Transversales veins. 

(i) Please see resource categories and further details below.

San Felipe is a late stage exploration project, located in the State of Sonora, approximately 130 kilometers north-west of Hermosillo City, the state capital of Sonora. Previously, Minera Hochschild Mexico SA de CV ("MHM") explored and developed the property from 2001 to 2008, with more than 18,500 meters of diamond drilling and significant development work completed on the project at the La Ventana, San Felipe and Las Lamas veins.

During 2011 Santacruz began conducting an exploration program in the area to confirm and support MHM's previously discovered resources at the La Ventana, San Felipe and Las Lamas veins. Additional resources have been delineated in the Las Lamas, Cornucopia, Artemisa, Santa Rosa and Transversales veins. In addition, to the south-west of the project is a target named Los Locos, which has exploration upside. This has led to new exploration potential on the project.

Gustavson estimates that the San Felipe project contains a Mineral Resource of 3 million metric tons of measured and 900 thousand metric tons of indicated mineralization, containing 31 million and 8 million troy ounces of silver equivalent, respectively, above a cutoff grade of 75g AgEq/t. The report estimates that there is an additional 1.5 million metric tons of inferred mineral resource above the 75 g AgEq/t cutoff containing 11 million troy ounces of silver equivalent. The sulfide mineral contains primarily silver, lead and zinc with associated copper (resource tables are attached). These Mineral Resources are only from the La Ventana, San Felipe and Las Lamas veins.

Gustavson made a site visit on December 8, 2011. While on site, Mr. Hulse verified drill collar locations, inspected underground workings, took structural measurements of altered and mineralized outcrops, examined core, correlated laboratory assay sheets and Santacruz digital database entries with altered and mineralized sections of core, discussed Santacruz's quality assurance, quality control (QA/QC) procedures, and reviewed hard copy project documents. Mr. Hulse concludes that the data quality is adequate and appropriate to develop a Mineral Resource estimate.

The San Felipe project has all necessary permits and agreements for this stage of the project. The community has been historically involved in mining and supports the project, and the state of Sonora has been pro-mining in the past. Gustavson is of the opinion that the legal and political risks of this project are small and comparable with other successful projects in the area.

President Arturo Prestamo states, "This initial NI4 3-101 Mineral Resource estimate on San Felipe has exceeded management's expectations and establishes this project as a significant and major asset of the Company." The following Mineral Resource Tables outline the current NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate as of May 15, 2012. Additional exploration work is planned on the Las Lamas, Cornucopia, Artemisa, Transversales and Santa Rosa veins, and assessment of the additional potential is currently being studied at these five areas.

The following summary tables will be presented in a NI 43-101 Technical Report on Resources. Shareholders and interested parties are encouraged to read this report which will be available on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) and on the Company's website at www.santacruzsilver.com within the next 45 days.


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                               All Veins Total                              
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                                       Measured                             
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                            Equivalent                                      
Ag Eq(i)  Tonnes Ounces Ag   Ounces Ag         Equivalent                   
Cutoff   (x1000)   (x1000)     (x1000)  Ag gpt     Ag gpt   Cu %  Pb %  Zn %
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
50         4,314     8,919  37,717,861   64.30     271.94   0.25  2.56  4.51
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
75         3,133     7,313  30,886,731   72.60     306.64   0.29  2.83  5.11
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
100        2,420     6,193  25,969,902   79.59     333.76   0.32  3.02  5.58
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
150        1,524     4,519  18,913,338   92.21     385.95   0.38  3.40  6.52
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                            
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                                      Indicated                             
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            Equivalent                                      
Ag Eq(i)  Tonnes Ounces Ag   Ounces Ag         Equivalent                   
Cutoff   (x1000)   (x1000)     (x1000)  Ag gpt     Ag gpt   Cu %  Pb %  Zn %
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
50         1,546     2,663      11,679   53.58     235.05   0.20  2.29  3.96
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
75           936     1,876       8,188   62.33     272.09   0.24  2.56  4.63
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
100          621     1,408       6,116   70.50     306.13   0.27  2.81  5.26
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
150          329       860       3,869   81.35     366.05   0.34  3.38  6.32
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                                 Measured + Indicated                       
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            Equivalent                                      
Ag Eq(i)  Tonnes Ounces Ag   Ounces Ag         Equivalent                   
Cutoff   (x1000)   (x1000)     (x1000)  Ag gpt     Ag gpt   Cu %  Pb %  Zn %
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
50         5,860    11,582      49,397   61.48     262.21   0.23  2.49  4.37
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
75         4,069     9,189      39,074   70.24     298.69   0.28  2.77  5.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
100        3,042     7,601      32,086   77.73     328.12   0.31  2.98  5.51
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
150        1,853     5,378      22,782   90.28     382.42   0.37  3.39  6.49
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                            
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                       Inferred                             
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            Equivalent                                      
Ag Eq(i)  Tonnes Ounces Ag   Ounces Ag         Equivalent                   
Cutoff   (x1000)   (x1000)     (x1000)  Ag gpt     Ag gpt   Cu %  Pb %  Zn %
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
50         3,084     4,140      19,913   41.75     200.80   0.16  2.17  3.35
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
75         1,495     2,149      11,347   44.70     236.08   0.20  2.68  3.92
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
100          750     1,281       6,742   53.16     279.68   0.25  3.02  4.74
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
150          317       651       3,533   63.82     346.58   0.33  3.63  6.01
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ag Eq is the silver equivalent used to calculate the cutoff. The silver     
 equivalent was calculated with the following equation:                     
AgEq = Ag + (Cu (i) 0.009387 (i) 10000) + (Pb (i) 0.002685 (i) 10000) + (Zn 
 (i) 0.002563 (i) 10000)                                                    
                                                                            
Where:                                                                      
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          Definition                                                   Price
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
AgEq      the silver equivalent                                             
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ag        the estimated silver grade in grams per tonne          $30.99/t oz
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cu        the estimated copper grade in %                          $3.491/lb
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pb        the estimated lead grade in %                           $0.9988/lb
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Zn        the estimated zinc grade in %                           $0.9531/lb
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

--  Pending metallurgical studies, all metal recoveries are assumed to be
    identical. 
--  The grades for copper, lead, and zinc are multiplied by each metal's 3
    year trailing average price ratioed to silver's 3 year trailing average
    price in matching units. 
--  The quantity and grade or quality is an estimate and is rounded to
    reflect the fact that it is an approximation. 

The Mineral Resources are reported using a 75g/t silver equivalent cutoff. Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. This Mineral Resource estimate has been prepared in accordance with NI 43-101 and CIM "Best Practices and Reporting Guidelines". There is no certainty that all or any part of the Mineral Resource will be converted to Mineral Reserves.

Arturo Prestamo, President & CEO of Santacruz, stated; "I am very pleased with the results of this initial NI 43-101 Mineral Resource estimate on the San Felipe mine project. While it has exceeded our initial expectations, it also provides us with more confidence that further exploration on the other targets will allow us to significantly expand this resource. We are now positioning San Felipe to be the second producing asset in our portfolio after our Rosario project, which we are targeting to have in commercial production by mid 2013." Mr. Prestamo added, "The Company intends to build upon the previous work done by MHM to advance the project into a significant producing asset."

About Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. and San Felipe

Santacruz Silver is focused on three silver deposits in Mexico with a corporate objective to reach production by first quarter 2013. The Company aims to become a mid-tier silver producer in Mexico.

Under the terms of an agreement dated August 3, 2011, as amended, between MHM and a subsidiary of the Company, the Company was granted the right to explore the San Felipe project and an option, exercisable until April 1, 2013, to acquire the project, as described in the Company's Filing Statement filed under the Company's profile at www.SEDAR.com.

Arturo Prestamo Elizondo, President, Chief Executive Officer and Director

All scientific or technical nature information herein was approved by Harald Hoegberg and Randy Henkle (both of whom are qualified persons as such term is defined in National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects). Mr. Hoegberg and Mr. Henkle are independent consultants for Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd.

Forward-looking information

Certain statements contained in this news release, such as potential mineralization on the Company's properties, the Company's exploration and development plans and anticipated production dates on the Company's mineral properties, constitute "forward-looking information" as such term is used in applicable Canadian securities laws. Forward-looking information is based on plans, expectations and estimates of management at the date the information is provided and is subject to certain factors and assumptions, including, that the Company's financial condition and development plans do not change as a result of unforeseen events, that the Company obtains regulatory approval, future metal prices and the demand and market outlook for metals. Forward-looking information is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause plans, estimates and actual results to vary materially from those projected in such forward-looking information. Factors that could cause the forward-looking information in this news release to change or to be inaccurate include, but are not limited to, the risk that any of the assumptions referred to prove not to be valid or reliable, that occurrences such as those referred to above are realized and result in delays, or cessation in planned work, that the Company's financial condition and development plans change, delays in regulatory approval, risks associated with the interpretation of data, the geology, grade and continuity of mineral deposits, the possibility that results will not be consistent with the Company's expectations, as well as the other risks and uncertainties applicable to mineral exploration and development activities and to the Company as set forth in the Company's Filing Statement filed under the Company's profile at www.sedar.com. The Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, other than as required by applicable law.

This news release does not constitute an offer to sell or solicitation of an offer to sell any securities in the United States. The securities have not been and will not be registered under the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "U.S. Securities Act") or any state securities laws and may not be offered or sold within the United States or to U.S. Persons unless registered under the U.S. Securities Act and applicable securities laws or an exemption from such registration is available.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

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