Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — The Hà Nội Superior People’s Court has ordered an official investigation into suspicions of embezzlement by a fugitive former State official, Trịnh Xuân Thanh.
Thanh, former Vice Chairman of the Hậu Giang provincial People’s Committee and former chairman of Petrovietnam Construction Joint-Stock Corporation (PVC), is already under investigation for alleged violations of State regulations on economic management that caused about VNĐ3.3 trillion (US$142 million) in losses for PVC.
He is also under an international arrest warrant having fled the country to Europe to avoid prosecution.
The court’s decision was made on Wednesday at a trial of three defendants charged with cheating customers of the Thanh Hà-Cienco 5 real estate project that indirectly involves Petrovietnam Power Land Joint-Stock Company (PVP Land), of which PVC is a major stakeholder.
Based on documents obtained in this case and declarations made by defendants, the court found that there were signs of embezzlement conducted by Thanh and some former leaders of PVP Land.
PVP Land owned more than 50 per cent of shares of the Hà Nội-based Trans Pacific Service Joint-Stock Company (TPS). In 2010, PVP Land wanted to divest from Trans Pacific JSC and received approval from PVC.
During investigation of the Thanh Hà-Cienco 5 case, Đào Duy Phong, former chaiman of PVP Land, told the investigative body that Trịnh Xuân Thanh, as chairman of PVC, ordered Phong and Nguyễn Ngọc Sinh, former PVP Land CEO, to sign a contract transferring PVP Land’s shares at TPS to Lê Hòa Bình, chairman of 1-5 Construction and Service JSC, also a defendant in the Thanh Hà-Cienco 5 case. The price of the shares listed in the contract was lower than the real price, allowing those involved to benefit from the difference.
This resulted in a loss of VNĐ87 billion (US$3.9 million) for PVP Land, according to the jury.
Based on the proposal of Hà Nội’s Superior Procuracy, the jury decided to commence criminal proceedings against Thanh, Phong, Bình and others suspected in the embezzlement case. — VNS