Appeal trial began for former OceanBank executives

  • 05:58 - 2018/04/19

The High-Level People’s Court in Hanoi began to hear the appeals of Ha Van Tham, former Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Ocean Commercial Joint Stock Bank (OceanBank), and his accomplices for their wrongdoings at the bank. 

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Defendants at the court

Due to OceanBank’s poor capability and violations committed by Ha Van Tham, the bank suffered serious losses, leading to the loss of the 800 billion VND invested by PetroVietnam when the State Bank of Vietnam was forced to buy OceanBank at zero VND.

The OceanBank case is one of the six major economic crimes that received the direct instruction from the Central Anti-Corruption Steering Committee.

A total of 27 defendants appealed against the verdict made at the first instance trial which took place from August 28 to September 29, 2017. These defendants claimed innocence or asked for reduced punishment, suspended sentences and absolution from criminal responsibilities. Three organisations and individuals with related interests and duties also asked for re-consideration of compensation. 

At the first instance trial, the Hanoi People’s Court sentenced Ha Van Tham to life imprisonment on four counts: “property embezzlement”, “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets”, “breaching lending regulations of credit institutions”, and “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences.” 

Nguyen Xuan Son, former General Director of OceanBank, was sentenced to death on the charges of “property embezzlement”, “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets” and “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences”.

Nguyen Minh Thu, former Deputy General Director of OceanBank, got 22 years in prison for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences,” and “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets.”

The court also handed down jail sentences of 14 years on Pham Cong Danh (former Chairman of the Board of Directors of Thien Thanh Group) and 17 years on Hua Thi Phan (former Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of Phu My Investment and Development JSC) for “breaching loan regulations of credit institutions.”

Danh and Phan, along with two other defendants, have submitted requests for permission to be absent at the appeal trial due to health problems.

The appeal trial is scheduled to last until April 29 and its verdict is expected to be announced after the Reunification Day (April 30) and May Day holidays.

Source: VietNamNet

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