Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Timber-laden trucks halted on way to Vietnam

Timber-laden trucks halted on way to Vietnam

Authorities seize one of two timber trucks suspected of transporting 35 cubic metres of first-grade timber to Vietnam on Friday in Tbong Khmum province. Photo supplied
Authorities seize one of two timber trucks suspected of transporting 35 cubic metres of first-grade timber to Vietnam on Friday in Tbong Khmum province. Photo supplied

Timber-laden trucks halted on way to Vietnam

Authorities in Thbong Khmum province have intercepted two trucks suspected of illegally shipping first-grade timber cleared from the Lower Sesan 2 hydro-electric dam site.

Chan Dara, the assistant to provincial prosecutor Heing Sopheak, said yesterday that the provincial court ordered the interdiction and inspection of the trucks last Friday because they were “headed in the wrong direction”, towards Vietnam rather than to their approved destination.

“Even if the timber is legal, they were still stopped because the transportation should not have gone to that [check point],” he said.

“The trucks were going in the wrong direction. The timber totalled least between 15 to 17 cubic metres per truck. Whether they were overloaded or not, they had to be halted as long as they were headed on the wrong route,” he added.

Joint forces, including customs officials and national military police, halted the trucks carrying timber belonging to Ang & Associates Lawyers Ltd. The trucks were stopped near a check point on the Vietnamese border, violating law permits for transportation of timber, which is limited to areas within Tbong Khmum province.

He added that the seized trucks and timber were impounded at Tbong Khmum’s customs office for inspection by experts and further legal action.

According to Stung Treng Provincial Forestry Administration’s records, four Agriculture and Forestry Administration officials, as well as a company representative, measured both trucks’ timber at a sawmill in Stung Treng’s Sesan district last Tuesday. The notes also state that the 35.555 cubic metres of timber were from “the clearing of water reservoirs of the Lower Sesan 2”.

On the same day, provincial agricultural department had issued the company permission to transport the timber from the sawmill to Tbong Khmum’s Ponhea Krek district and Kampong Cham’s Koh Sotin district.

One of the trucks, however, operated under a permit that had expired one day before the incident, and was thus transporting timber illegally.

Spokesman of National Military Police Eng Hy, and the company’s representative Mol Ban could not be reached for comment yesterday.

MOST VIEWED

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • Shipwreck found off coast of Koh Kong

    Royal Cambodian Navy researchers are working to identify a decades-old shipwreck found earlier this month off the coast of Koh Kong province. Divers found the 70-metre-long wreck on April 4 about a mile from Koh Chhlam island, according to Navy officials. Deputy Navy Commander Tea Sokha,