Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Four sent to court for bulldozing wetlands

Four sent to court for bulldozing wetlands

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Four tractors were seized from four suspects in a deforestation case in Kampong Thom province. Police

Four sent to court for bulldozing wetlands

The Kampong Thom provincial authorities sent four suspects to the provincial court on Monday after they were arrested the day before for clearing an area of flooded forest with a tractor in Khsach Chi Ros village, Kampong Kor commune, Kampong Svay district.

Provincial governor Sok Lou confirmed on Tuesday the four suspects had been sent to the court, but he can’t predict how it will decide.

“Our officials have sent the case to court. The suspects have cleared about 10ha of the flooded forest at the above location, which is a protected area where fish spawn during the rainy season. They cleared the land for ownership, so it’s illegal,” Lou said.

Police questioned the four suspects about bulldozing the wetlands at the provincial police office, district governor Un Both said.

“I sent the authorities to check the location but they haven’t reported back yet. I don’t know the size of the land or its history. I am waiting for them to report to me first,” he said.

Provincial police chief Ouk Kosal could not be reached for comment, while provincial Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Department director Pen Vannarith confirmed the incident, but declined to comment.

District police chief Khen Chhunkor said on Monday he knew about the case but there was no request for intervention from his forces.

“I think there were enough provincial authorities, so my forces were not requested to help with this work,” he said.

Fresh News had reported that Lou coordinated with prosecutor Sin Virak, Kosal, and anti-economic crime officers to catch the suspects and confiscate the bulldozing equipment.

Authorities retrieved four tractors and three cell phones from four men aged 26, 23, 20 and 17, it said. All the suspects live in Kampong Svay district’s Sankoa commune.

MOST VIEWED

  • All Covid restrictions for inbound travellers lifted

    Cambodia has apparently taken the final step towards full reopening of the country without Covid-19 restrictions by removing all requirements for inbound travellers, who until now had to show health certificates indicating that they have tested Covid-19 negative in the past 72 hours as well as

  • Typhoon Noru brings flash floods – 16 dead

    An official warned that that the 16th typhoon of the season, Noru, had brought heavy rains to areas the Mekong River and flooded thousands of homes in the provinces bordering Thailand. As of September 27, the death toll from the flooding had risen to 16. National Committee

  • Cambodia stands firm on 5PC: No invite for Myanmar to ASEAN Summit this year

    Cambodia has not invited Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, chairman of Myanmar’s ruling State Administration Council (SAC), to the 40th and 41st ASEAN Summit and related meetings scheduled for next month in Phnom Penh. The government will instead invite a non-political representative from Myanmar

  • Mushrooming borey projects and home financing – a cause for concern?

    A spurt in housing developments is typically a sign of a growing economy but underneath all that might lay some anxiety of credit growth as developers offer financing to buyers at higher rates, an activity the central bank identifies as ‘shadow banking’ Earlier this year,

  • Thai Senate delegates in Cambodia to discuss anti-graft co-op

    A delegation from Thailand's Senate was in Phnom Penh on September 28 to meet their Cambodian counterparts to discuss strategies for fighting corruption and enhancing cooperation. The Thai delegates were from its Senate’s Committee on Studying and Inspecting Corruption, Misconduct and Strengthening Good Governance. They

  • Hun Sen’s rare visit to Cuba: What’s going on?

    Back on August 17, Prime Minister Hun Sen announced that he would deliver a speech at the 77th UN General Assembly (UNGA) at the UN headquarters in the US’ New York City, visit Cuba and attend the state funeral of the slain Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo