Trinh Xuan Thanh in court in Hanoi in January. Photo: DPA
A Vietnamese former oil executive allegedly kidnapped from Germany was jailed for life on Monday for embezzlement, state media reported, his second life sentence tied to a corruption crackdown in the communist country.
The one-party state has convicted scores of business and political elites as part of an anti-graft drive observers say is driven by political infighting as much as a commitment to fight crime.
Trinh Xuan Thanh is one of the biggest names to go down as part of the purge, which mirrors a similar crackdown in neighbouring China.
Thanh, the former head of PetroVietnam Construction (PVC), was found guilty of pocketing $620,000 of state funds from a real estate project.
Thanh was convicted alongside seven others who all got lighter sentences following a two-week trial in Hanoi, according to state-controlled VNExpress news site.
“The jury board found all eight defendants guilty of embezzlement. Because he was ultimately responsible, Trinh Xuan Thanh was given a life term,” VNExpress quoted the prosecutor as saying.
Embezzlement carries a maximum sentence of death in Vietnam, though Thanh was spared because he cooperated with the court, according to state media.
The other defendants were given between six and sixteen years in jail.
“The defendants’ actions were a symbol of ethical degradation and corruption by civil servants for their own benefit,” the prosecutor added.
Thanh’s case has grabbed international headlines since Germany said he was kidnapped from a Berlin park by Vietnamese security agents last year, slamming the move as a “scandalous violation” of its sovereignty.
Hanoi denies the accusation, and said Thanh — who had been seeking asylum in Germany — returned to Vietnam to voluntarily hand himself in.
Thanh’s first life sentence was handed down last month in a separate trial, where he was accused alongside ex-politburo member Dinh La Thang and 20 others of causing $5.2 million in losses for the state during an investment by state-run PetroVietnam into a thermal power plant.
Thang — the former head of PetroVietnam, the country’s largest oil firm — is the most senior official convicted of graft in recent years.
He was handed 13 years in prison in the case that captivated a nation unused to seeing misdeeds of high-profile figures play out in public.
Both men have appealed their sentences in that case.
Though Vietnam has long vowed to tackle graft, a conservative leadership in place since 2016 has convicted scores of bankers, officials and former executives at an unprecedented pace.
This week, 46 bankers face sentencing for allegedly causing millions of dollars in losses.
Vietnam ranks 113th out of 176 on its corruption perception index, worse than its Southeast Asian neighbours Thailand and the Philippines, Transparency International said.
- Elsa Segura Sentenced To Life In Prison For Aiding In Killing Of Monique Baugh
- Iran Admits to Stealing Oil from Greek Tankers in Helicopter Raids
- Uncertainty lingers on with global oil and gas investment
- I’m a mom – how to immediately get rid of lice in your kids hair in 4 simple steps
- True Crime: Slavery special - the world's most shocking cases
- Escaped murderer captured, killed following 3-week manhunt in Texas
- Convicted Murderer Who Escaped Prison Dies In Shootout With Police. Authorities Say He Killed Family Of Five
- Gonzalo Lopez’s victims identified as Mark Collins and 4 grandsons aged 11 to 18 who were shot dead by escaped convict
- Mi Hu Tieu: A man named ‘New’ sells old noodles
- Here’s why you shouldn't miss ‘bột chiên’ while in Ho Chi Minh City
- Man who killed Rita Gutierrez-Garcia in 2018 pleads guilty after leading Longmont police to her body
- Breakfast @ Tuoi Tre News – June 9
- Fury as three people are fined for breaking Covid laws at Sarah Everard vigil
- Family spark bomb scare on hottest day of year after finding unexploded device on beach
- Conecta Fiction & Entertainment Unveils Projects From Fabula-Fremantle, Leticia Dolera, Bela Tarr
- Ukraine-Russia war latest LIVE: Madman Putin ‘thinks west will BLINK first’ as paranoid despot ‘losing grip on power’
- Ukraine: Zelenskyy says potential for turning point in war — as it happened
- Ten places you'll never visit
- Avengers Endgame : View: Is 'Avengers: Endgame' worth waking up at 4 am for?
- The Holocaust Started With My Great-Uncle’s Murder
Vietnamese oil exec 'kidnapped' in Berlin gets second life sentence have 681 words, post on www.thelocal.de at February 5, 2018. This is cached page on Health Breaking News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.