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Press freedom: Reporter complains of ‘beating’

Press freedom
A REPORTER at Resmey 7 Makara newspaper has accused a timber broker of beating him after he took pictures of the man’s truck, which he believes was transporting illegal lumber.

Plong Reth said yesterday that he had filed a complaint against Hout Sophann to the police chief of Sra Nge commune, in Siem Reap town, on Sunday – two days after the alleged incident.

“I sued [the broker] for injuries he caused me, and demanded he pay US$2000 in compensation,” he said.

Chet Saet, commune police chief, said he would send the complaint to the provincial police station today.

Hout Sophann, the accused, denied the allegations yesterday, saying he was preparing to file a complaint of his own against the reporter on charges of extortion.

“Maybe he is angry because I didn’t pay the $100 he demanded when he pulled my truck over to the side of the road,” he said.

The broker said he had a licence to transport the wood from Doung Srouch Company in Preah Vihear province to a warehouse in Banteay Meanchey province for distribution.

Representatives from Doung Srouch Company could not be reached for comment yesterday.  

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