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Petrol smugglers face charges

Update: November, 30/2012 - 10:59

HA NOI (VNS)– The Anti-Smuggling and Investigation Department under the General Department of Viet Nam Customs has found firm evidence to prosecute the Viet Nam Air Petrol Company (Vinapco) for tax evasion involving billions of Vietnamese dong.

In early July, Vinapco made seven customs declarations to re-export 422,000 tonnes of petroleum worth VND8 billion (US$383,500) to a Chinese firm called Beihai Seafood and Oil Supply Limited Company.

The deal was allegedly done through the Ta Lung border gate in the northern province of Cao Bang. However, all the petrol was sold domestically in northern Hai Duong, Phu Tho, Thai Binh and Thai Nguyen.

After becoming aware of the investigation, Vinapco allegedly borrowed petrol from other companies to offset their missing inventory. They kept seals and glued them back together, and sought approval from Customs to re-import the fuel with an excuse that their Chinese partner had refused to accept delivery.

On August 1, their re-import request was accepted by the Hai Phong Customs.

Through their investigations, the Anti-Smuggling and Investigation Department found the Chinese firm on the re-export documents did not exist. It also found that 2,300 tonnes of the 54,000 tonnes of gasoline temporarily imported by the company on May 10 was re-exported to the dummy Chinese firm of Beihai by sea.

With sufficient evidence on the serious violations by the Vinapco under the Penal Code and the taxation policy and regulations, on November 28, the department decided to transfer the case to the Criminal Police Department under the Ministry of Public Security for further investigation.

Once investigations are completed, the case is expected to go to court. — VNS

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