A raid organized after receiving a tip led to the discovery on Thursday of rows of luxury-grade wood stacked in a Kandal province warehouse, officials said.
“We found many pieces of rosewood and Thnong,” one of Cambodia’s rarest species, said Ly Sokcheat, deputy chief of the provincial police’s economic crimes bureau.
Provincial court director Hok Vanthina issued the warrant that spurred the raid in Samraong Thom commune after the Kien Svay district’s Forestry Administration division chief, identified only as Phy, filed a complaint.
Mr. Phy led the raid, but no one was present when they arrived, so the court was investigating who might be involved, Mr. Sokcheat said.
So Sovichea, deputy court prosecutor, said he had “received secret information that the warehouse was stocked with wood.” The authorities will transport the wood to the Forestry Administration cantonment in Takhmao City, he said.
Authorities did not know who owned the warehouse, but were investigating, he said.
However, according to a court warrant posted on government-aligned Fresh News on Thursday, the owner of the warehouse is Ly Hour, 39. The warrant orders authorities to inspect Ms. Hour’s warehouse “because she is suspected of stocking wood without a permit.”
Experts from the Forestry Administration were currently measuring the wood to prepare an estimate of its value, Mr. Sovichea said.