HÀ NỘI — The Hà Nội-based High-level People’s Court on June 10 opened a trial to look into appeals of Phan Văn Anh Vũ, also known as Vũ ‘Nhôm’, together with four former officers of the public security sector.
Vũ, former Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bắc Nam 79 Construction Company, former Chairman of the Nova Bắc Nam 79 Company and former Senior Lieutenant Colonel in the public security force, was charged with "abusing position and power while performing duties."
Bùi Văn Thành and Trần Việt Tân, both former deputy ministers of public security, faced the charge of "showing irresponsibility, causing serious consequences."
Phan Hữu Tuấn, former Deputy General Director at the public security ministry, and Nguyễn Hữu Bách, a former officer of the ministry, were also brought to the first-instance trial for the charge of "abusing position and power while performing duties."
According to the first-instance court, Vũ, in the names of divisions under the public ministry, asked ministries, agencies and local authorities to rent land to him and transfer the right to use land and property on land of public housing and land projects spanning thousands of square metres in prime positions in Da Nẵng and HCM City not in line with legal regulations.
The People’s Court of Hà Nội on January 30 sentenced Vũ to 15 years in jail for "abusing position and power while performing duties."
Vũ’s accomplices – Tuấn and Bách – each received five years imprisonment for the same charge.
Meanwhile, the two former deputy ministers Thành and Tân, were sentenced to 30 months and 36 months in prison, respectively, for the charge of "showing irresponsibility, causing serious consequences."
Following the trial, the Hà Nội People’s Procuracy filed appeals against the court’s decisions on civil matters regarding companies and units.
Vũ claimed innocence in the case. Thành asked for probation while Tân appealed to the court to protect his legitimate rights and interests. Both Bách and Tuấn asked for reduced sentences.
In a related development, yesterday afternoon police raided the house of Trương Duy Nhất, former head of the representative office of the State-run Đại Đoàn Kết (Great Unity) newspaper in Đà Nẵng in the period 1998-2001.
Previously, Nhất was charged with the crime of abusing his position to misappropriate assets, for his illegal acts surrounding Vũ’s questionable acquisition of many public properties in the central city. — VNS