Senator accuses Taib-linked group of illegal logging

A unit of Ta Ann Group Bhd, a Sarawak-based timber giant closely linked to Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud, is being accused by an Australian lawmaker of invading a protected 430,000-hectare Tasmanian forest that was supposed to be protected by a national-state inter-government agreement.

Tasmanian senator Bob Brown, the leader of Australia's Greens, said that although the governments had signed an agreement earlier this year to protect the forests until an independent verification process was completed, Ta Ann had already begun logging.

"Four months later, not one hectare has been protected and Forestry Tasmania continues to fell these magnificent trees as fast as they can put the roads in. All up, more than 10 square kilometers of our wild forests will be destroyed," Brown said...