About 40 hectares of a sugar cane plantation were destroyed by a fire yesterday in Svay Rieng province’s Svay Teab district and police believe it may have been arson.
Prey Ta Ey commune police chief Reach Sophun said the fire started at about 1am yesterday and that authorities and sugar cane farm staff extinguished it by 9am.
“Around 40 hectares of sugar cane farm were destroyed in the fire and we are investigating to find suspects,” he said.
Kuy Saren, the farm owner, said this was not the first time his crops had been burned down, and added that no one has ever been arrested.
“We suspect someone set the fire intentionally, but it is difficult for us to accuse anyone because we do not have evidence,” he said.
Mr Saren said the fire was difficult to put out because it spread rapidly.
“We face many problems in the area, including fires, but also villagers’ cattle eating our crops,” he said, noting the farm was about 200 hectares. In November, more than 200 hectares of sugar cane plantations in Svay Teab district’s Kokisom commune were also destroyed by a fire which has yet to be explained.