The man behind a ring that managed to illegally fell down and transport a large amount of logs with impunity in Vietnam’s Central Highlands has been arrested, along with several members of the racket, police said on Friday.
Ringleader Phan Huu Phuong, 48, was nabbed and taken into custody after police raided his residence in Ea T’Linh, a town in Cu Jut District, Dak Nong Province.
Phuong and some of his ring members are being investigated for their involvement in serious illegal logging activities at the local Yok Don National Park, located at the border of Vietnam and Cambodia, according to police.
During Friday’s raid, officers also confiscated 37 cubic meters of illegally logged timber, stored inside two trucks, at a workshop owned by Phuong, and various logging tools and piles of logs at an illegal logging site inside the park.
Phuong had managed to take the illegal logs out of the national part without impunity, even though he had to pass several check points run by the local border guard and forest ranger units.
Police thus hold suspicion that the ring had been abetted by local authorities.
The Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security has sent a team of officers to help local police in further investigation of the case.
|Curious neighbors surround the residence of Pham Huu Phuong when police raid the house. Photo: Tuoi Tre|
|Illegal logs are seized by local Police in Dak Nong. Photo: Tuoi Tre|