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Two Vietnamese men sent to Mondulkiri court for illegal logging

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Two Vietnamese nationals and a Cambodian were arrested on Tuesday for logging in Mondulkiri province. GRK

Two Vietnamese men sent to Mondulkiri court for illegal logging

Two Vietnamese nationals and a Cambodian were sent to Mondulkiri Provincial Court on Wednesday for their involvement in forestry crimes.

Mondulkiri provincial Military Police commander Hem Bonarel told The Post on Wednesday the trio was arrested on Tuesday in Banlung town. He declined to provide details, saying only that the Cambodian suspect was a translator for the two Vietnamese.

“I sent them to court on Tuesday. I don’t know what the court will do. It’s now beyond my jurisdiction,” he said.

Provincial court deputy prosecutor Morm Vanda confirmed the trio were being questioned. “I’ve sent the case to an investigating judge. I don’t have any details now,” he said.

Kroeung Tola, a forest protection activist in Mondulkiri, said on Wednesday that forestry crimes in the province have largely ceased since a series of high-profile crackdowns by the National Committee for Prevention and Crackdown on Natural Resource Crimes.

He urged the authorities to pursue their clampdowns and arrest illegal timber traders who he said had cleared forest in the provinces for many years.

“Logging companies have destroyed forests in many forms. Some of them have cleared them in their economic land concessions while others committed the crime outside their concession boundaries,” he said.

A report issued by the Committee and published on the National Military Police’s Facebook page said Mondulkiri provincial Military Police destroyed five home-made trucks and five types of machinery and detained two suspects between Monday and Wednesday.

The two have since been released after being reprimanded and fined.

In Ratanakkiri province on Monday, the report said, Military Police confiscated 10 pieces of Sralao timber in Andong Meas district and sent them to Andong Meas district Forestry Administration for further action.

In Kratie province, Military Police also seized an unspecified amount of rosewood and Kor Koh timber that was hidden in the forest in Sambor district.

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