Environment Ministry, T'ganu Forestry Dept, aiding probe into shooting at illegal logging site


PUTRAJAYA: The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry, and the Terengganu State Forestry Department are working with police on an investigation into the shooting of a forestry enforcement officer by an unknown assailant during a recent raid on an illegal logging site in the state.

Its minister, Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, said the ministry views the matter very seriously, as the incident involved a civil servant attacked while carrying out his duty to protect the country's forests.

"We cannot take this incident lightly, and I am disappointed that there is an individual who dares to injure an enforcement officer.

"We will work closely with the police in this case so that the mastermind behind this incident will be brought to justice and receive punishment," he said in a statement today.

Yesterday, a forestry enforcement officer and a mechanic were injured after being shot by an unknown assailant using an air rifle during a raid on an illegal logging site at Kampung Serdang, near the Bukit Bauk forest reserve.

It was reported that four officers and a mechanic had entered the site at 5.30pm on Friday, following a tip-off that illegal logging was being carried out there.

The area had been deserted, but the team found a broken-down excavator and several other items that had been left unattended.

The items included logs, seven fuel containers, keys and two parangs.

The items were seized and the mechanic was instructed to repair the excavator so that it could be driven out of the area.

As they were about to leave, three long distance shots were fired in their direction, injuring one of the enforcement officers and the mechanic.

The mechanic was injured on his thigh, while the officer's torso was wounded.

Both received outpatient treatment at the Dungun Hospital.