Former CDC director to face up to 11 years in jail

A prison term from 10 to 11 years has been proposed for Nguyen Nhat Cam, former director of the Hanoi Centre for Disease Control (CDC Hanoi), for “violations on bidding regulations that causes serious consequences”.

At the first-instance trial, the Hanoi People’s Procuracy on December 11 also proposed jail sentences of 7-8 years for Nguyen Vu Ha Thanh, former head of the CDC Hanoi’s Financial-Accounting Office; and Dao The Vinh, Director of Vietnam Scientific and Material Science Company Limited (MST).

A prison term of 6-7 years was sought for Nguyen Tran Duy, former General Director of Nhan Thanh Asset Valuation and Auctioning JSC; and Nguyen Ngoc Nhat, an employee of Vitech Development Co.,Ltd.

Other defendants, including Nguyen Thi Kim Dung, former head of the CDC Hanoi’s Organisation Office; Nguyen Ngoc Quynh, former head of the CDC Hanoi’s Professional Plan Office; and Nguyen Thanh Tuyen, an employee of Phuong Dong Medical Equipment Co.,Ltd were proposed for 5-6 years in prison.

Meanwhile, Le Xuan Tuan, an official of CDC Hanoi; and Hoang Kim Thu, former Chief Accountant of CDC Hanoi may face 2-3 years in jail.

According to the indictment by the Supreme People’s Procuracy, taking advantage of the COVID-19 situation, from early February 2020, CDC former director Nguyen Nhat Cam colluded with Nhat, Tuyen and Vinh to raise the prices of medical machineries and equipment in a bidding package from CDC Hanoi before carrying out normal procedures.

He then directed his employees to legalise all normal procedures, enabling MST to win the bid with a price they had agreed upon, resulting in an economic loss of over VND5.4 billion (US$233,200).
Procurators said Cam was the mastermind.

The defendants earlier confessed to police that they jacked up the price of the Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) machines used in testing the new coronavirus by a factor of three.