Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - More than 300 kakoh logs seized in Ratanakkiri secret timber stash



More than 300 kakoh logs seized in Ratanakkiri secret timber stash

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Kakoh logs were confiscated on Monday by Ratanakkiri provincial anti-financial crime police. Supplied

More than 300 kakoh logs seized in Ratanakkiri secret timber stash

More than 300 kakoh logs were confiscated on Monday by Ratanakkiri provincial anti-financial crime police, in cooperation with Banlung district authorities at a secret timber storage site in Yeak Loam commune’s Labo village.

The logs have been handed over to local Forestry Administration officials pending legal procedures.

Banlung district police chief Huot Borey told The Post on Wednesday that the raid was conducted after a patrol team identified an apparently closed down location where people were waiting to buy timber.

He said the logs were being secretly collected at night and taken away on motorbikes. The site was closed and deserted during the daytime.

“When we saw this irregularity, our authorities requested a warrant from the Ratanakkiri provincial prosecutor to inspect the location. After that, we found 315 kakoh logs measuring 25cm thick by 1.2m long,” he said.

Ratanakkiri provincial Forestry Administration chief Keb Kot told The Post that agency officials are attempting to identify the owners of the secret timber selling operation and bring them to justice for harvesting timber without a permit.

“The wood is being kept temporarily by the provincial Forestry Administration to wait for legal action to be taken."

“In this case, the owner could face a fine under the Forestry Law if a court finds he has been operating a site to buy and sell processed and unprocessed timber without permission,” Kot said, adding that the confiscated timber amounted to more than 15 cubic metres.

Ratanakkiri court spokesman Keo Pisoth said on Wednesday that neither local nor provincial-level police had yet to find the owner of the timber cache.

“The case has not yet been submitted to our court. Local officials said the location has had multiple transfers of ownership in the last few years, so they have requested a delay while they ascertain who and where the owner is,” Pisoth said.

Separately in Mondulkiri province, the sub-committee for researching and combating natural resource crime has launched a campaign to monitor companies with land concessions that run operations to clear and harvest forest land in the province.

Provincial governor Svay Sam Eang said the campaign began on Saturday and the sub-committee has already found some companies that were failing to replant trees on harvested land.

Provincial Military Police commander Hem Bonarel, who joined the campaign, told The Post on Wednesday that authorities had also found four stockpiles of timber in Pou Lu village in Pech Chreada district’s Bou Sra commune.

“The wood was hidden under plastic sheets with grass on top. There’s a total of 92 pieces, and we have collected and handed them over to the Mondulkiri Forestry Administration to keep and proceed in accordance with the law,” Bonarel said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Would you like fries with that? US burger chain makes Phnom Penh debut

    California-based The Habit Burger Grill restaurant chain is all set to serve up a delicious array of charbroiled burgers and sides at its newest international location in the centre of Phnom Penh. The Habit is “renowned for its award-winning Charburgers grilled over an open flame,

  • Banteay Meanchey flood victims receive aid

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday provided aid to more than 10,000 families affected by flooding in Banteay Meanchey province’s Mongkol Borei district and offered his condolences to the 18 victims who drowned in the province over the past week. He said flooding had occured in

  • PM urges caution as Polish man tests positive for Covid

    The Ministry of Health on Wednesday reported that a 47-year-old Polish man tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Cambodia on Monday. There are a total of six Covid-19 patients currently in the country, all of whom are being treated at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital

  • Banteay Meanchey floods kill one more as death toll reaches 15

    As floodwaters start to recede in Pursat, Battambang and Pailin provinces and Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey continues to bear the brunt as one more person was killed on Monday, bringing the total number of flood-related deaths to 15 in the province this month. Banteay Meanchey provincial

  • Serving coffee with a side of robots

    The eye-catching glass building surrounded by greenery at the intersection of Streets 371 and 2002 in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district is more than just another coffee shop where you can while away a few hours. UrHobby House cafe is filled with robots and characters from

  • Floods prompt evacuations in Kampong Speu

    Rain-induced floods and water flowing from Kampong Speu province have submerged the houses of 1,527 families living close to the Prek Thnot River in Spean Thma, Tien, Kong Noy and Roluos communes in Phnom Penh’s Dangkor district, according to data from local authorities. Spean Thma