Nearly 9,000 litres of suspected smuggled petrol that was seized early last month originated from military sources, reported National Steering Committee 389.— Photo dantri.com.vn
HÀ NỘI — Nearly 9,000 litres of suspected smuggled petrol that was seized early last month originated from military sources, reported National Steering Committee 389.
On March 4, officers in Hưng Yên Province seized a Hà Nội-bound truck carrying 8,815 litres of aviation petroleum. The truck driver failed to present legal documents proving the origin of the fuel.
After a one-month investigation, the National Steering Committee against smuggling, commercial fraud and counterfeiting released its report confirming the source of the petrol was the Military Petroleum Department under the Ministry of National Defence (MoND).
The man who sold the fuel was identified as Nguyễn Văn Thành, Deputy Head of the Supply Planning Division of the 165 Co., Ltd – a subsidiary of the MoND’s Military Petroleum Corporation.
The Department imported the aviation petroleum to provide for the Vietnamese army’s aircrafts with the Company 164 put in charge of distribution. The 9,000 litres in question was the leftover petrol in the import tanks after the fuel was pumped into smaller 200 litre-kegs that are more convenient for distribution to different units. Company 165 started storing the leftovers in 2012.
National Steering Committee 389 Deputy Chief of Staff Hồ Quang Thái said what must be determined is whether the seized fuel was truly the leftovers or newly imported fuel set to be smuggled.
“Even if it is old petrol, documents are still required as are the right procedures. We have to work out whether this illegal selling has been going on for a long time,” he said.
As the source of the fuel was the military, the case was handed to the MoND for further investigation.
Thái warned of risks posed to vehicle users when the petrol in question – intended for aircrafts only – was sold to the public, especially when the buyer of the fuel was identified as a private motor petroleum company named Đức Minh in Bắc Từ Liêm District.
Results from the fuel sample tests by the Directorate for Standards, Metrology and Quality (DSMQ) showed that the seized petrol’s lead content was more than 0.85 grams per litre, about 80 times higher than national standards.
DSMQ General Director Trần Văn Vinh said that this high lead content could significantly affect human health and the environment.
“We are still working to predict what the fuel could be used for in order to give suitable warnings to consumers as well as authorities for better management,” he said. — VNS