The Hanoi People’s Court will reopen a trial for ex-minister of industry and trade Vu Huy Hoang and nine accomplices on April 22 for violations at the ministry and in Ho Chi Minh City that caused losses of over VND2.7 trillion (US$112.5 million).
The first-instance trial was first held on January 7. However, it was delayed due to the absence of three defendants and many other people whose rights and obligations are associated with the case. The trial was held again on January 18 but suspended again for the same reason.
Hoang, born in 1953, and Phan Chi Dung, born in 1957 and the former Director of the Light Industry Department at the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), were charged of “violating regulations on the management and use of State assets, causing losses and wastefulness”.
The eight other defendants, who are former HCM City officials, including former Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Huu Tin, were accused of “violating regulations on land management”.
The trial is scheduled to last until April 29.
According to the indictment from the Supreme People’s Procuracy, the Saigon Beer - Alcohol - Beverage JSC (Sabeco), which is under the MoIT’s management, was given more than 6,000 sq.m in downtown HCM City for production and business purposes.
However, Hoang, former Deputy Minister Ho Thi Kim Thoa, and Dung directed subordinates at the ministry and Sabeco to carry out procedures for using land use rights and Sabeco's money as capital contributions to set up Sabeco Pearl, a joint venture between the firm and a number of private enterprises, to implement a project building a hotel, a trade and convention centre, and office space for lease on the land.
After Sabeco completed legal procedures for the joint venture’s investment and proposed the HCM City People’s Committee approve the addition of officetel and housing functions to this project, the MoIT ordered the company to transfer all of Sabeco's stake in this project to the private enterprises in the joint venture.
This was illegal and resulted in a loss some US$112.5 million to the State, according to the indictment.
Another of the accused, Ho Thi Kim Thoa, has fled, and the investigation police agency has put her on the wanted list.