GIA LAI — The claim that lumberjacks attacked officials of the management board of the northeast Chư Păh preventive forest to rob logs was untrue.
This was stated by Colonel Phan Lang, deputy director of Gia Lai Province’s police, while talking to the media on Thursday.
Earlier, local media reported that before the Tết (Lunar New Year) holidays at the end of January, the Chư Păh forest management board caught two people red-handed transporting timber out of the forest using two oxen.
There were at least 73 logs, each one 3.5 to 4m long, lying in forest zone No 174. However, according to a media report, on the morning of February 1, 20 armed people stole 45 of the 73 logs. The remaining 28 logs are still in zone 174.
Local police said the loggers did not use guns to threaten officials to steal the logs.
According to the investigation, the security force of the forest lost some logs, which were evidence of the deforestation. Scared of being disciplined, Lê Đức Nhàn, head of the security force of the forest’s management board, and other security guards agreed to make up a story about thieves and reported it to the media.
The local Department of Information and Communications was requested to ask media agencies to issue the correction while the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development was asked to impose penalties on the forest’s management board. — VNS