In April, 13 suspects were charged in the Mondulkiri Provincial Court for encroaching on forest land in wildlife sanctuaries at Phnom Prich, Srepok, Nam Lear, and Keo Seima, said Ministry of Environment secretary of state and spokesperson Neth Pheaktra.
The sanctuaries are protected under the Law on Natural Protected Areas. He said the 13 perpetrators violated articles 56, 60, and 62, which all concern destroying natural resources.
Pheaktra said the perpetrators used a variety of tricks to illegally occupy state forest land in the protected areas by claiming their group had lived on and reaped benefits from it for many years.
“No one has the right to occupy, buy or sell land in protected areas. The ministry requests that all citizens who are not well-versed in the law to stop being cheated by fraudsters.