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Kratie timber smuggling vans seized

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Kratie provincial Military Police raided a timber broker’s premises on Tuesday, seizing eight vans which were allegedly attempting to transport logs illegally to Vietnam. facebook

Kratie timber smuggling vans seized

The Kratie provincial Military Police raided a timber broker’s premises in Kratie town’s O’Russey commune on Tuesday, seizing eight vans which were allegedly attempting to transport logs illegally to Vietnam.

Kratie Provincial Court deputy prosecutor Chea Sopheak told The Post on Tuesday that Kratie provincial Military Police had impounded eight vans transporting luxury timber.

Sopheak said he was only representing the court as a mediator in the crackdown on forest crime and provided no further details.

“Whenever there is an offence involving timber, the Military Police must crack down on it,” he said.

Provincial Forestry Administration deputy director Buoy Ratana could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.

According to Fresh News, Military Police on Monday surrounded a timber storage building belonging to timber broker, Chum Vuthy, who goes by the name Thikapo.

The police confiscated eight vans hidden on the premises that were used to transport timber, Fresh News said.

Kratie provincial Military Police deputy commander Long Yoeng was quoted by Fresh News as saying that the armed forces raided the timber storage building and impounded eight vans that were hidden and loaded to capacity with luxury timber logs.

The report said the timber had been handed over to provincial Forestry Administration officials.

Yoeng said when the raid was conducted, the timber trader was not at home and provincial Military Police are currently searching for the man, who is suspected of involvement with the cross-border trade of illegal timber.

Thma Kre Forestry Administration chief Mey Vuthy described the timber as “luxury” and “high-grade”.

He said the logs had a large diameter and were two to three metres long but, as of Tuesday morning, Forestry Administration officials had not yet measured them.

In a separate case, Ratanakkiri provincial Military Police on Sunday also cracked down on illegal timber traders at a cashew nut plantation in Andong Meas district’s Nhang commune, according to the National Military Police’s website.

The timber has not yet been measured, but the evidence has been transported to Security Headquarters Number 787 in Andong Meas district, the website said.

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