On August 30 – September 1, 2016, INTERPOL hosted “INTERPOL Transnational Investigations into Forestry Crime” in the Novotel Yangon Max hotel in Yangon, Myanmar. A total of 25 representatives from the 5 countries of Great Mekong (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand), the UNODC and EU also attended the seminar.
The Superintendent and Deputy Superintendent from Natural Resources and Environmental Crime Division of the Royal Thai Police attended the INTERPOL Transnational Investigations into Forestry Crime seminar. On the second day, the representatives from 5 nations presented their individual situation and cases surrounding transnational forestry crimes. For Thailand, the representative informed the meeting of the success in investigating the leads from the rosewood arrests within the protected areas in Thap Lan and Khao Yai. The leads led them to be able to identify the Cambodian ringleader and arrest him for further court ruling in Thailand.Also, there were references to the latest rosewood case in Thailand on the 24 of August in which 20 containers of rosewood from Lao PDR were found en route to Hong Kong, falsely declared as wood charcoal. Presently, the investigation is still ongoing; Customs officials are amidst compiling legal documents for investigators.Representative from INTERPOL praises Thailand’s work ethics and attention on the subject matter. They also advise for Thailand to take initiative in investigating suspects in foreign countries, which the INTERPOL will gladly fund if Thailand is interested in further investigating in the related source nations. Coordination details will be officially sent later on via Thailand’s NCB.