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Mondulkiri rangers arrest Vietnamese nationals for ‘poaching’

Mondulkiri rangers arrest Vietnamese nationals for ‘poaching’

Two Vietnamese men were charged with poaching and placed in pre-trial detention yesterday after allegedly attempting to capture wild bulbul birds in Mondulkiri’s Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary.

On Tuesday, environmental rangers patrolling the sanctuary observed two men in the process of attempting to catch the medium-sized songbirds in Pech Chreada district, said provincial environmental department director Keo Sopheak.

The rangers, Sopheak said, promptly arrested the men and brought them in for questioning at the ranger station at Phnom Prich, where they were identified only as Vankang, 41, and Phoeung, 30.

Rangers confiscated a motorbike, nets, a live bulbul bird and a mobile phone that contained birdsong recordings meant to attract the hunters’ prey, said Sopheak.

“They laid the net and played bird music. Birds hear [the music] and come and they are caught,” said Sopheak, explaining that the men intended to catch bulbuls, which can be sold in Vietnam for high prices.

Both men were sent to the provincial environmental department on Wednesday, where they were detained overnight, before their transfer to the provincial court yesterday.

“The court charged [them] and put them in jail for poaching birds illegally,” said Sopheak.

According to Sopheak, the suspects’ passports indicated they crossed the Vietnamese-Cambodian border 16 times this year.

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