Loggers Held in Thailand Sent Home After 1 Year

Three Cambodian men who were arrested in Thailand more than a year ago after venturing across the border to illegally log rosewood were on Monday released from prison and sent back home, border officials said.

The men, who are all from Kompong Speu province, were apparently lured into the illegal trade by middlemen who persuaded them to sneak into Thailand from Oddar Meanchey province in search of the much soughtafter luxury wood, according to Toch Ra, chief of the Oddar Meanchey’s ChoamSa Ngam international checkpoint.

Mr. Ra said the men—who had been held at a prison in Thailand’s Sisaket province since their arrest on November 7, 2013—were repatriated via his checkpoint.

You Sothearith, chief of the immigration police at the checkpoint, said Thailand sent back a total 27 Cambodians through the checkpoint last month —all of whom had spent more than a year in Thai prisons.

“This is the sixth time early this year that Thai soldiers have sent our people back to Cambodia via the ChoamSa Ngam international checkpoint, a total of 30 people,” he said.

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