- Associated Press - Thursday, January 16, 2014

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) - State forestry officials say there’s been a surge in reported timber thefts in East Texas woodlands.

A statement Wednesday from the Texas A&M; Forest Service says more than 20 timber theft cases have been reported from the Red River in the Ark-La-Tex to almost the Gulf coast of Southeast Texas.

What’s making the timber easy pickings is the fact that one-third of the more than 200,000 family forest landowners I East Texas don’t live on the land and aren’t around to guard their timber stands.

The state recommends property owners have trusted persons report any cutting, never sign a contract without checking a buyer’s references, insist on getting bids for the timber, mark all property lines and enlist the help of advisers, if necessary, to help in the sale.

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