Cambodia: Businessman Try Pheap files defamation complaints against 2 quoted in NGO report that accused him of illegal logging, "land grabbing"

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Article
25 November 2013

Cambodian NGOs Threaten to Expose More Illegal Logging

Author: Rachel Vandenbrink, Radio Free Asia

A group of Cambodian NGOs threatened on Monday to expose more cases of forestry crime involving businessmen and the police, saying they were unshaken by a defamation suit filed by a top tycoon accused of illegal logging and land-grabbing. Representatives of the five organizations told reporters Monday they have information about “at least 100 individuals” complicit in illegal logging, including high-ranking police officers who they said could be held liable for criminal charges of corruption and forest destruction…Two villagers quoted in…[an NGO] report…have been summoned to appear in court...in a lawsuit over the report…

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Article
24 November 2013

Defamation suits follow NGO report [Cambodia]

Author: May Titthara, Phnom Penh Post (Cambodia)

Tycoon Try Pheap has filed a defamation complaint against two people quoted in an NGO report released last week that accused him of illegal logging and widespread land grabbing…This is only two days after the Cambodian Human Rights Task Force alleged in a report that Pheap’s land empire, built on government concessions, had expanded to more than 70,000 hectares, displacing at least 1,445 families and facilitating an illegal-logging syndicate…“I fear this summons – because he is rich and powerful. Even though we are in the right, we won’t be able to win this case...” [said Sen San, one of the accused]…[refers to MDS Import Export Company]

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Article
19 November 2013

Report calls out Pheap [Cambodia]

Author: May Titthara, Phnom Penh Post (Cambodia)

Logging tycoon Try Pheap’s rapidly expanding land empire, criticised by rights groups for displacing families and encroaching on protected forest areas, has grown to almost 70,000 hectares in size and is helping to facilitate a cross-border illegal logging operation, a report [by Cambodian Human Rights Task Force]…alleges…[A] company representative…denied allegations of illegal activity. “Our company does not log illegally,” he said…“We buy wood that has been seized by the authorities…The money goes to the state. We do not export it. We process it in Phnom Penh as furniture.” He said allegations made about the companies’ practices were spurious, and villagers were given adequate compensation when they were relocated...[refers to MDS Import Export, Pheapimex, Shukaku]

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