Environment authorities in Kampong Thom province detained a 12-year-old boy for four days after the child’s father injured an officer, rights group Adhoc said.
Nheum Y, a 39-year-old man, had logged a tree in Boeung Pea wildlife sanctuary, and was carrying the log on an ox-cart with his son, when two environment officers stopped them, asking the father to pay a fine of 90,000 riel ($22.5).
The father allegedly battered the chest of one of the officers and was detained, said Adhoc officer Lor Chann.
His 12-year-old son, however, disappeared after the incident, prompting the mother to file a complaint with Adhoc, saying her son had been detained.
Vun Theoun, head of the wildlife sanctuary, said officials hadn’t detained the boy, but protected him at a private company.
Chhun Thy, a policeman in Rumany commune, said environmental officials brought the boy to him one day after the incident.
“The boy told me that those officials asked for money,” Chhun Thy said, “and the fight broke out because his father didn’t have enough money.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Phak Seangly at [email protected]