Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Falling tree kills logger in Kratie forest

Falling tree kills logger in Kratie forest

Environmental officers inspect and seize illegal timber last week in Kratie province. Photo supplied
Environmental officers inspect and seize illegal timber last week in Kratie province. Photo supplied

Falling tree kills logger in Kratie forest

An illegal logger was killed when a first-grade tree fell on him in a Kratie community forest whose chief has allegedly gone into hiding following accusations of being involved in forestry crimes.

Two men, including the deceased, Meng Chhun Heng, 34, were felling a sokrom tree in Prasat Prey Toek Khmao community forest, in Kampong Cham commune, according to local village chief Im Pov.

“The two of them covertly logged a sokrom tree, [measuring] 40 centimetres in diametre and 16 metres long,” he said. “While they were logging, their chainsaw’s blade got stuck, and the tree . . . broke, falling on the victim.”

Prey Lang activist Ek Sovannara said the victim used to be involved in protecting the forest from illegal logging but started logging for money.

Two weeks ago, Prey Lang activists had discovered about 300 logs of first-grade timber in the community forest, where days later another 86 pieces of wood were found, Sovannara said.

Sovannara alleged community forest chief Teav Oun and some other community members were involved in forestry crimes. Oun couldn’t be reached for comment.

Kampong Cham commune chief Chhut Norm said he suggested that Oun be suspended from his position after receiving a complaint from Pov. However, Oun allegedly escaped when he failed to meet with authorities two weeks ago regarding the accusations.

The 5,665-hectare community forest, which borders Prey Lang Wildlife Sanctuary, is registered with the Ministry of Agriculture, Sovannara said.

Winrock International has been providing technical and financial support to patrollers in the community. Curtis Hundley of Winrock said the organisation couldn’t comment on the allegations.

“Winrock is not in a position of authority to investigate who is behind these illegal activities,” he said.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all