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Reporter arrested after extorting $70,000 from Chinese business

Update: December, 20/2018 - 10:00
Đào Thị Thanh Bình, a reporter for Thương Hiệu và Công Luận newspaper, was arrested on Wednesday for extortion. — Photo tuoitre.vn
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Đào Thị Thanh Bình, a reporter for Thương Hiệu và Công Luận (Brand and Public Opinion) newspaper, was arrested on Wednesday after she tried to extort US$70,000 from a China-invested enterprise in Bắc Giang Province.

The 40-year-old reporter was caught at the newspaper head office receiving $70,000 in an envelope from a Chinese national, the external relations manager of Luxshare - ICT Vietnam Company.

Bình admitted to police that she hoped to earn $100,000 from the enterprise, but after some negotiation, the sum of money dropped to $70,000.

Police of Bắc Giang Province, in co-ordination with Hà Nội’s Cầu Giấy District, seized $70,000, a CPU and other objects and documents from Bình. She was arrested along with one other person who is suspected of acting as a broker in the case.

Thương Hiệu và Công Luận newspaper is under the Việt Nam Association for Anti-Counterfeiting and Trademark Protection.

Police said that Bình, on an assignment from the editorial board, went to the headquarters of Luxshare - ICT Vietnam Company in Quang Châu Industrial Park, Việt Yên District, Bắc Giang Province to write an article on worker housing at the firm.

She then asked for $100,000 to ignore law violations at the enterprise. It is currently unclear what this illegal activity was and how she discovered it. The editorial board were reportedly unaware of the violations when Bình was sent on assignment.

The editorial board had written a letter of recommendation to the company, Bắc Giang Industrial Park Management Board and Bắc Giang Province People’s Committee to allow Bình to report on the story.

Before being arrested, Bình told the editorial board that she was waiting for the business to reply to some of her questions.

Bắc Giang Province police said there was a broker who contacted the company with an initial offer, and then Bình bargained to settle on $70,000.

Bình is a resident of Thanh Xuân District, Hà Nội.

The newspaper is co-operating with Bắc Giang Province Police Department to handle the case according to regulations. — VNS

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