Court Questions Man Arrested for Extorting Loggers

The Kompong Speu Provincial Court on Thursday questioned a man arrested on Tuesday for allegedly extorting loggers transporting timber along a small road in the province’s Oral district, officials said.

Chim Meng, 38, was arrested at about 10 a.m. on Tuesday at an illegal checkpoint on a road in Tasal commune, according to Svay Yoeun, deputy chief of the provincial police’s judicial bureau.

Mr. Yoeun said loggers in the area complained about Mr. Meng to commune police, who then informed provincial officers.

“We arrested him because he is involved with setting up an illegal checkpoint to extort money from local loggers,”

Mr. Yoeun said, adding that Mr. Meng was wearing a Royal Cambodian Armed Forces uniform at the time of his arrest and claimed to be a military official.

“After arresting him, we confiscated one AK and 74 bullets at his illegal checkpoint,” he said.

Keo Sothea, prosecutor at the provincial court, said on Thursday the court had not yet charged Mr. Meng with any crime.

“We are still questioning him at the court and we have decided not to charge him today,” he said.

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