Namphao-Cau Treo International Checkpoint police have arrested a driver of a cement truck that had confiscated illegal timber after finding the load hidden inside the truck in Borikhamxay province.
Authorities then returned the vehicle to the 505 customs office in Phonpheng village, Khamkeuth district, Borikhamxay province for inspection.
After thoroughly inspecting the vehicle, authorities found a total of 589 pieces weighing 7,270kg, of pterocarpus macrocarpus (Maydou or Burma Padauk) – a durable wood used in construction and furniture making which is similar to rosewood.
The driver, a Vietnamese national, confessed that on July 23 he drove the truck, belonging to a company in Vietnam, to transport cement to another company in Khamkeuth district.
After finishing the delivery, another man had called to tell him that he must transport more goods upon returning to Vietnam, for which he would receive 10 million kip. He then drove his truck to receive the timber at a location about four kilometres from the company in Khamkeuth district.
On July 26 he then travelled from Khamkeuth district to the Namphao-Cau Treo International Checkpoint with the intention of returning to Vietnam but was arrested.
Currently the police in Khamkeuth district are carrying out an investigation seeking the owner of the timber to bring them to justice according to the law.
Over the past three months several provinces have seized illegal timber after enforcing a recent order from the Prime Minster.
Over that time more than 9,000 cubic metres of illegal timber has been seized in the more southern province of Attapeu.
Source: Vientiane Times