Three Overloaded Timber Trucks Seized

Authorities in Preah Vihear province last week seized three trucks belonging to a pair of commercial plantations in neighboring Oddar Meanchey province on suspicion of illegally transporting logged trees.

Khim Pan, deputy director of the Forestry Administration’s Preah Vihear cantonment, said on Sunday that two of the trucks belonged to the Korean-owned Nature Plantation and that the third belonged to Lon Agritech, a Chinese plantation.

He said they were traveling in a group and were stopped for inspection along National Road 62 in Preah Vihear City, where they were being kept at cantonment headquarters.

“The drivers escaped, but we have summoned the owners of the companies to come to inspect the wood,” he said.

According to Mr. Pan, trucks are typically allowed to haul about 10 cubic meters of wood at a time, but the three were each loaded with about 40.

He said the companies would be fined if found to have been transporting wood above the legal limit and could also have the logs seized if they did not have proper permits.

Representatives for the plantations could not be reached.

Commercial plantations are often accused by local residents and environmental rights groups of laundering timber illegally logged outside their properties.

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