Former HCMC vice chairman to face trial later this month

Former HCMC vice chairman Nguyen Huu Tin will be brought to trial at the end of this month for his alleged involvement in the murky sale of a public plot of land, resulting in losses of over VND800 billion for the State.

Former HCMC vice chairman to face trial later this month

Nguyen Huu Tin, while serving as the vice chairman of HCMC between 2011 and 2016 in this file photo, could face a maximum of 20 years’ imprisonment for State property mismanagement – PHOTO: VNA

On Wednesday, the HCMC People’s Court made the decision in the case involving the illegal handover of a 2,300-square-meter public land lot at 15 Thi Sach Street in District 1, HCMC, to one of the companies owned by now-jailed business tycoon Phan Van Anh Vu, alias Vu Nhom.

The city’s 62-year-old ex-leader Tin and four other former officials will be standing trial on December 26, 27 and 30. His accomplices include Dao Anh Kiet, 62, former director of the HCMC Department of Natural Resources and Environment; Truong Van Ut, 49, former deputy head of the department’s Land Management Division; Le Van Thanh, 56, former deputy chief of the HCMC People’s Committee Office; and Nguyen Thanh Chuong, 44, former head of the office’s Urban Division.

All of them have been indicted for breaking regulations on the management and use of State-owned property leading to losses and wastefulness, based on Article 219 of the 2015 Penal Code. The offense is punishable by 10-20 years’ imprisonment.

The court has summoned the representatives of multiple local State agencies with related rights and obligations.

These agencies comprise the HCMC People’s Committee; a local committee in charge of the restructuring and management of public houses and land in HCMC; and the departments of natural resources and environment, construction, finance, planning and architecture and tax.

Representatives of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Finance have also been summoned to appear before the court.

The 44-year-old Vu Nhom, who moonlighted as an operative for the General Department of Intelligence, with the Ministry of Public Security, in 2009 and left the organization in 2017, was found to have signed many legal documents and asked the then leaders of the ministry to sign various documents that were sent to the HCMC government.

The aim of the proposal was to enable his company, as a front for the ministry’s General Department of Intelligence, to lease the prime land with a no-bid contract for the ministry’s professional operations, according to the indictment.

 

Since the proposal was granted, his company had collaborated with other firms to execute a construction project for Vu’s personal gain.

The indictment stated that Tin, who was serving as the municipal deputy chairman in charge of construction and land management between 2011 and 2016, had approved the lease deal in June 2015, restricting the company from being able to transfer, sublease or mortgage the prime land or contribute its land use rights in place of capital.

However, Tin signed another decision later that year allowing the company to become an investor for a trading, service and apartment complex project, including an existing 18-story structure.

He later instructed the company to work with the city’s agencies to complete preparatory procedures for the project. As a result, the local government approved the project in May 2016.

Kiet, Ut, Thanh and Chuong allegedly sought advice from Tin in handing over the land to the company. The company was not required to pay compensation for assets and architectural objects on the land nor rent for the land, which was against prevailing regulations.

Their errors caused losses of VND6.7 billion to the State, since the company received support while violating the law, and losses in terms of land use rights worth over VND800 billion.

Also, Vu and his partners have put the multi-story building up for sale and lease, earning revenue of more than VND1 trillion. SGT

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