Armed robberies on the rise

October 22, 2018 - 12:00

A series of armed robberies have been reported in recent months, raising public concern over security and social order.

Seized guns and explosives at a police office in central Nghệ An Province’s Đô Lương District. – VNA/VNS Photo
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI – A series of armed robberies have been reported in recent months, raising public concern over security and social order.

On October 13, a member of staff at Saigon Hanoi Commercial Joint Stock Bank (SHB) in northern Quảng Ninh Province’s Uông Bí City found that one of two ATMs had been rigged with 10 mines.

On the same day, an explosion occurred in the kitchen of an official in Nghệ An Province. According to police, a device was thrown into the house of Trần Xuân Lục, chairman of Đồng Hợp Commune’s People’s Committee, at around midnight. No injuries were reported.

On September 20, a robbery was reported at a gold shop in Sơn La Province. Three suspects threatened the owner with a gun, but were later arrested.

Đặng Văn Cường, a lawyer from Chính Pháp Lawyers’ Office, told Nông thôn Ngày nay (Countryside Today) newspaper that the crime had threatened people’s lives, health and property.

The most concerning fact was that the culprits were becoming more reckless and arming themselves with dangerous weapons such as guns and explosives. They were ready for a fight to death, he said.

Easy to purchase

The reason for the increase in armed crimes was mainly the loose management of weapons trading.

Colonel Hà Thị Hồng Lan, deputy director of the Centre for Crime Research and Criminal Investigation at the People’s Police Academy under the Ministry of Public Security, said that control over weapons such as guns and grenades remained lax.

Cường said the Law on Management and Use of Weapons, Explosives and Combat Gear and Government Decree 79/2018 stipulated specifically which individuals and organisations were allowed to manage and use weapons and explosives.

The problem was a lack of supervision.

Smuggling had worsened the problem, he added.

Skills needed

According to experts, more measures should be taken to address the recent outbreak of crime.

Lieutenant Colonel Đào Trung Hiếu a criminologist at the Ministry of Public Security, said to avoid armed bank robberies, staff needed training.

Local authorities, in co-operation with local police, should install cameras and hotlines.

Safety was the first priority, he added.

Colonel Lê Ngọc Phương, deputy head of the ministry’s Criminal Police Department, said the recent bank robberies showed weak security at banks. 

Colonel Lan said that control over the use and purchase of weapons and explosives must be tightened, and strict penalties for violators should be applied. – VNS