Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Alleged Angkor loggers caught

Alleged Angkor loggers caught

Alleged Angkor loggers caught

Siem Reap Provincial Court yesterday charged three men with illegally logging rosewood in the Angkor Archaeological Park and ordered police to look for two additional accomplices.

“The three were charged with logging and collecting a natural resource. Two other men are also suspected to be involved; one escaped from the scene, and another guarded the way for the three to commit the crime,” provincial prosecutor Heng Pheng told the Post.

If found guilty of logging top-grade rosewood, the suspects face between five and 10 years in prison, according to Article 93 of the Law on Forestry.

Park authorities say the five loggers included father and son snail vendors Hin Run, 53, and Sum Phirak, 20, as well as Phay Sophea, 20, a Mr Hun, 25, and one unknown man. The group allegedly snuck into the park and cut a five-metre rosewood tree about 11:30pm on Monday.

The 20-centimetre-thick tree was allegedly trimmed into four planks to be carried out of the park on the back of the loggers’ motorbikes.

The three suspects in police custody admitted that they could sell the rosewood to a trader for between $6 and $7 per kilogram, Man Chhoeurn, a park police official, said.

“We work both day and night to take care of temples, visitors, ancient temple stones and the forests, especially at night, because there are many rosewood trees,” he said.

He added that rosewood is becoming less and less common, so loggers have taken to risking getting caught inside the Angkor Archaeological Park.

Three cases of attempted logging in the park were recorded this year.

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,

  • 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

  • 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

  • China-Cambodia tourism forum held

    The Cambodian tourism sector must be prepared to welcome a growing number of Chinese tourists, as they lead the globe in the number of outbound travellers and were responsible for the most visitors to the Kingdom last year, the country’s tourism minister said on