Police prosecute seven individuals relating to COVID-19 test prices

December, 20/2021 - 07:45

Police have arrested and initiated legal proceedings against Phan Quốc Việt, general director of Việt A Technologies JSC, for allegedly raising the price of COVID-19 test kits.

Investigative Police initiated legal proceedings against Phan Quốc Việt, general director of Việt Á Technologies JSC, and Phạm Duy Tuyến, director of CDC Hải Dương, for allegedly raising the price of COVID-19 test kits. — Photo tuoitre.vn

HÀ NỘI — Police have arrested and initiated legal proceedings against Phan Quốc Việt, general director of Việt Á Technologies JSC, for allegedly raising the price of COVID-19 test kits.

Lieutenant General Tô Ân Xô, Chief of the Ministry of Public Security Office and Spokesperson of the Ministry of Public Security, said on Saturday that the Investigation Police Agency of the Ministry of Public Security has been investigating violations of regulations on raising the price of COVID-19 testing kits from Việt Á Company, Hải Dương CDC (Centre for Disease Control) and related units and localities.

On December 10, 2021, the Investigative Police Agency conducted an emergency search of 16 locations in eight localities (Hà Nội, HCM City, Hải Dương, Thừa Thiên-Huế, Bình Dương, Long An, Cần Thơ, Nghệ An) and summoned 30 related individuals. 

In April 2020, Việt Á Company was licensed by the Ministry of Health to distribute COVID-19 test kits. Since then, Việt A Company has supplied COVID-19 test kits to CDCs and other medical facilities in 62 provinces and cities across the country, with a revenue of nearly VNĐ4 trillion.

As a result of the initial investigation, Phan Quốc Việt and key leaders of Việt Á Company confessed they had taken advantage of the urgent demand for COVID-19 test kits in the country and actively provided hospitals and CDCs' with medical materials and biological products in advance. He then colluded with leaders of these units to legalise the procedure of direct appointment of the contractor, so that Việt Á Company could be the providers of COVID-19 test kits to these units at prices set by the company, which were much higher than the production price.  

At the same time, Việt spent a huge amount of money to give to these officers and unit leaders. 

Việt overstated the price of equipment, input materials, and set the selling price of the COVID-19 test kit at VNĐ470,000.

Initially, the Police Investigation Agency of the Ministry of Public Security identified the violation in the sale of COVID-19 test kits by Việt Á Company to Hải Dương CDC through five contracts with a total value of VNĐ151 billion. Việt had given VNĐ30 billion to Phạm Duy Tuyến, director of CDC Hải Dương, for helping him winning the contract.

On December 17, 2021, the Investigative Police Agency issued a decision to prosecute the criminal case for "violation of regulations on bidding, causing serious consequences" at Việt Á Company, Hải Dương CDC and related units and localities.

At the same time, the agency decided to prosecute Phan Quốc Việt, general director of Việt Á Technologies JSC; Vũ Đình Hiệp (Deputy General Director of Việt Á Company); Hồ Thị Thanh Thảo (cashier of Việt Á Company); Phan Tôn Noel Thảo (Finance Assistant at Việt Á Company); Trần Thị Hồng (sales officer at Việt Á Company); Phạm Duy Tuyến (Director of Hải Dương CDC); Nguyễn Mạnh Cườnng (former Chief Accountant of Hải Dương CDC).

The unit has blocked bank accounts of Phan Quốc Việt and other members of Việt Á Company with a value of over VNĐ320 billion, 20 real estates in HCM City, Hà Nội and other locations. — VNS

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