Authorities in Ratanakkiri province raided the house of a Vietnamese national Tuesday and seized about five cubic meters of illegal luxury timber, but failed to arrest any suspects.
“We are now looking for two Vietnamese nationals who jumped over the gate of their house and escaped by foot before our authorities went inside the house,” said deputy provincial prosecutor Morm Vanda.
A Vietnamese security guard was briefly detained and released, he added. Mr. Vanda said that he issued a warrant for the arrest of the Vietnamese man, who he declined to name, after receiving information that illegally logged wood was being stored in the home in Banlung City’s Boeng Kanseng commune.
Van Songvath, deputy provincial police chief, said that authorities targeted the house after a truck transporting timber failed to stop at a checkpoint, hitting a police car. Police were able to trace the owner of the truck to his home in Banlung City, Mr. Songvath said.
Phan Phoeun, deputy chief of the provincial Forestry Administration, said that the luxury timber, which included 1,290 kg of rosewood, was being kept at the Lumphat district forestry office, but declined to say what authorities would do with it.
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