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Encroachment of national park, sea and river by pier operators in Phang-nga now under check

Government authorities are now checking several private piers at Tambon Lamkaen in Thai Muang district, Phang-nga province after they suspected that foreigners might use their Thai nominees to encroach the sea and marine parks.

The movement against encroachment came after local people complained that several private piers used by tour boat companies for cruising had encroached the sea and national park, notably at Pa Klong Thung Maprao national park in Thai Muang district.

In response to the complaints, deputy commissioner of the Tourist Police Bureau Pol Maj Gen Surachate Hakparn then went out to inspect along with national parkand port officials.

Initial inspection showed at least four private piers encroached the sea and national park.

He said these piers, walkways for passengers pierced into the river, and several major structures encroached on waterway, mangrove forests and national park.

Three illegal foreign guides were also rounded up, he said.

From the inspection, he said more investigation would be needed with the cooperation of forestry, national park and port officials to find the people involved in the encroachment.

Initially officials suspected foreigners financed their Thai nominees to encroach the sea, river to build piers for operating your business.

Moreover authorities would check their money trails and land occupation documents if they were legally issued.

He said if these structures were found to be built illegally or through illegal channel, they all be demolished.

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