Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Border province busts yield hundreds of logs

Border province busts yield hundreds of logs

A man poses for a photo with authorities and lumber on Saturday after he was detained for illegally transporting wood in Tbong Khmum province. Photo supplied
A man poses for a photo with authorities and lumber on Saturday after he was detained for illegally transporting wood in Tbong Khmum province. Photo supplied

Border province busts yield hundreds of logs

Hundreds of logs of illegal timber were seized across three eastern provinces over the weekend, despite government claims in April that it had put an end to illegal trade with Vietnam.

In Mondulkiri province, 453 logs were confiscated from three locations in Keo Seima district’s Sre Khtum commune, according to Forestry Administration district chief Choy Sokheang.

“The wood had been carried by people on their motorbikes. Vietnamese people were supposed to come and collect it, but they were stopped at the border so our officials investigated,” Sokheang said.

One stash of logs was uncovered on a rubber plantation, another on a cashew plantation, and the third in a charcoal factory located on the road to Vietnam over the course of a two-day joint operation between the Forestry Administration (FA), the prosecutor’s office, the army, military police and National Police on Thursday and Friday, Sokheang said.

In a separate case near the same charcoal factory, police stopped a car carrying 22 pieces of luxury wood, but the driver escaped, he added.

Meanwhile, Kratie province officials uncovered a sizeable haul over the weekend. FA officials in Chet Borei district’s Chang Krang commune seized 7 cubic metres of timber from a truck on Saturday afternoon, according to FA district chief Mey Vuthy.

“The driver escaped,” Vuthy said, adding the wood had been destined for sale in Tbong Khmum and Prey Veng provinces.

Tbong Khmum forestry officials also were busy on Saturday, seizing 80 pieces of luxury wood in Ponhea Krek district’s Korng Kang commune, according to Hak Seak Lim, spokesman for the provincial prosecutor’s office.

A posting on the Forestry Administration’s Facebook page said 37-year-old Tuon Rith was arrested along with the timber.

At the start of the year, a taskforce was established at the prime minister’s request to crack down on illegal logging in the Kingdom. In April, the taskforce announced it had put an end to timber smuggling across the border with Vietnam.

Asked yesterday if the weekend’s seizures indicated the crackdown had not been as decisive as originally thought, taskforce spokesman Eng Hy was adamant that was not the case.

“There is no wood being transported to Vietnam, and anyone who says there is doesn’t know what they’re saying,” Hy said. “The committee continues to work. When there is crime, there will be an arrest.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen: Full country reopening to be decided in two weeks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced that if the Covid-19 situation remains stable for 15 consecutive days from the end of the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, Cambodia will reopen fully, albeit in the context of Covid-19 whereby people have to adjust their lives to

  • Phnom Penh governor: Show Covid-19 vaccination cards, or else

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng late on October 5 issued a directive requiring all people aged 18 and over and the parents of children aged 6-17 to produce Covid-19 vaccination cards when entering schools, markets, malls, marts, eateries and other business establishments that have been permitted

  • Cambodia seeks probe into 'false reports' on Hun Sen's alleged Cypriot passport

    Minister of Justice Koeut Rith on September 6 wrote a letter to his Cypriot counterpart Stephie Dracos requesting cooperation in investigating and providing the truth in relation to the "exaggerative and false allegations" that Prime Minister Hun Sen holds a Cypriot passport. In his letter, the

  • 'Pandora Papers' expose leaders' offshore millions

    More than a dozen heads of state and government, from Jordan to Azerbaijan, Kenya and the Czech Republic, have used offshore tax havens to hide assets worth hundreds of millions of dollars, according to a far-reaching new investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (

  • Cambodia voted ‘world’s friendliest country’ in Rough Guides reader poll

    Cambodia ranked number one among the “World’s Friendliest Countries”, according to a reader poll conducted by London-based international website “Rough Guides”. Taking submissions through Twitter and Facebook, “Rough Guides”, a well-known travel agency and publisher of guidebooks, said the Kingdom “was by far the

  • Two major S’ville events could jumpstart international tourism: insiders

    Preah Sihanouk province is set to host two major international tourism-related events in late 2021 and early 2022, which insiders expect to ignite new interest among new and repeat foreign holidaymakers into visiting the Kingdom and significantly raise tourist arrivals from near zero in the Covid era.