Siem Reap Provincial Court has detained six suspects following the seizure of seven luxury SUVs carrying timber from Preah Vihear province to Phnom Penh on March 16, as part of a continued crackdown on illegal logging following a directive issued by Prime Minister Hun Sen in January. Ty Sovinthal, a court prosecutor, said the six men were involved with the transportation of 3 cubic metres of luxury timber and had been charged with transporting rare timber without the necessary permission. He added that the trial would await further investigations. Article 98 of the 2002 Forestry Law states that any person guilty of a violation could face one to five years in prison and be fined up to 100 million riels (about US$23,890). The arrests are part of a military crackdown that has so far resulted in the seizure of 10 cars carrying illegal wood. A further 400 cubic metres of timber were seized in Oddar Meanchey province’s Trapaing Prasat district on Friday. In January, Hun Sen told an audience of military commanders that illegal logging undertaken by high-ranking officials would no longer be tolerated.
Conraband: Illegal wood seized in Siem Reap