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Investigators prosecute six cases in DongA corruption scandal
Friday,  2/15/2019, 16:20 

Investigators prosecute six cases in DongA corruption scandal

The Saigon Times Daily

Tran Phuong Binh, former general director and vice chairman of HCMC-based DongA Commercial Bank – PHOTO: VNA

HCMC – The Investigative Police Agency, under the Ministry of Public Security, has filed six new cases involving 10 former members at the HCMC-based DongA Commercial Bank (DAB) under various charges, as part of a broader probe into a high-profile economic corruption case at the bank, a source told Thanh Nien Online newspaper.

The defendants include Tran Phuong Binh, 60, former DAB general director and vice chairman; Nguyen Thi Ngoc Van, 49, former DAB deputy general director; Nguyen Duc Tai, 51, former director of the DAB Transaction Center; and Nguyen Chi Cong, 40, former deputy head of the Credit Division at the DAB Transaction Center.

The new cases involve the Danang branch of DAB paying a total sum of VND660 million as extra-contractual interest sum to the Danang University of Science and Technology, and the Can Tho branch of the bank making similar moves, paying an extra interest sum of more than VND3.7 billion to the Can Tho Lottery One Member of State Co., Ltd and over VND1.7 billion to the Can Tho City Development Investment Fund.

Such acts committed between 2011 and 2015 are established to be in violation of prevailing regulations. The relevant individuals were accused of abusing their power as specified in the 2015 Penal Code.

Investigators also started legal proceedings over the violation of regulations on banking operations and other related activities, based on the 2015 Penal Code.

Some individuals, including Binh, Van and Nguyen Tang Ngoc Linh, former deputy director at the DAB branch of District 10 in HCMC, were found to have violated regulations on appraisal and lending to a group of clients, called Hiep Phu Gia.

The other cases involve the lending and asset mortgages of the bank regarding the property at No.198 Le Thanh Ton in District 1, the central business area of HCMC, as well as certain groups of clients in some southern provinces.

Late last year, the HCMC People’s Court handed down sentences to the former DAB boss and 25 other defendants for their involvement in the headline-catching scandal.

Binh, who was also the chairman of the credit council at DAB, was found to have pocketed more than VND2 trillion from the bank and to have approved payments worth over VND1.5 trillion in violation of the rules.

He and others caused a combined loss of more than VND3.6 trillion for the bank. Consequently, their actions led the bank to incur an accumulated loss of over VND31 trillion and negative equity of some VND25.4 trillion, as of late 2015.

As a result, the court gave him 20 years in prison for deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, leading to serious consequences, and life in prison for abusing his power to appropriate assets, resulting in a combined punishment of life imprisonment.

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