Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ‘Activist’ wanted for allegedly causing Kratie traffic accident

‘Activist’ wanted for allegedly causing Kratie traffic accident

‘Activist’ wanted for allegedly causing Kratie traffic accident

Kratie officials issued a warrant for a purported environmental NGO activist suspected of causing a car accident and extorting illegal loggers and timber smugglers, deputy prosecutor Hak Horn said yesterday.

Police said Soeng Kimsea, the 26-year-old deputy head of the Cambodian Organization for Environmental Protection and Human Rights, was chasing a car loaded with 30 pieces of timber in Tbong Khmum on May 12.

Kimsea drove up alongside and sideswiped the car he was chasing, causing it to crash into another car, injuring two passengers. Kimsea’s own car tumbled down into a ditch.

“In the past, he had extorted money many times from people who carry wood, and when they did not give him money, he chased them,” said Yean Heang, the Chet Borei district police chief in Kratie.

Court officials also issued warrants and summonses for the others involved in the crash.

The case comes amid a government crackdown on illegal timber that has seen several land companies and concession holders called to court to explain illegal logs found on their properties.

A Mondulkiri prosecutor said yesterday that five companies had been issued summons and were supposed to come to court over the past few weeks, but “two or three” had yet to do so.

Meanwhile, in Kratie, prosecutors are bogged down with trying to find witnesses and accomplices who are willing to testify against two other companies, according to provincial deputy prosecutor Hak Horn.

“There were only two companies – they had come to answer, but they denied that the wood was theirs and said they rented [the areas where the timber was found] to other people … therefore we need to call all involved people,” said Horn. “It will take a long time.”

Additional reporting by Igor Kossov

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group