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Illegal lumber sits in a Ratanakkiri forest on Thursday after it was seized by locals in Lumphat district. Police
Illegal lumber sits in a Ratanakkiri forest on Thursday after it was seized by locals in Lumphat district. Police

Villagers seize luxury wood in Ratanakkiri

Villagers in Ratanakkiri’s Lumphat district confiscated 300 pieces of luxury timber on Thursday that they claim belonged to an unnamed captain in the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces.

Tuoy Nhea, chief of the Samuth Leu community forest, said approximately 100 villagers took part in the action in Seda commune, having spotted loggers operating there earlier in the week. “We confiscated about 300 pieces of luxury wood belonging to an army captain operating under the protection of commune and district police,” Nhea said.

Police representatives were not reachable for comment yesterday.

“When we came to confiscate the wood, there were eight workers chopping it,” Neha continued. “We didn’t arrest them; we allowed them to go free, confiscated the wood and brought it to our community for safekeeping.”

Meanwhile in Stung Treng, provincial forestry officials and local military police confiscated a car loaded with 114 pieces of luxury timber in Stung Treng commune yesterday, according to a posting on the Forestry Administration’s Facebook page.

Forestry Administration representatives could not be reached yesterday.

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