Cop arrested for robbing illegal gambling dens

TN News

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The Ho Chi Minh City Police Department has dismissed a second lieutenant and arrested him for investigating allegations that he robbed several illegal gambling dens in the southern metro during Tet (Lunar New Year).

Ngo Thanh Tuan, 27, used to be a traffic cop in District 6 before he was transferred to the district's Mobile Police Division in January.

An anonymous police source told Vietweek that Tuan and eight others surrounded a gambling den near Cao Dat Market in District 5 on February 13.

Tuan announced that he was a plainclothes police officer and held up the gamblers with a gun. He and his men took about VND10 million (US$480) and a gold necklace.

The gamblers and local residents, who suspected the men were impersonating police officers, opposed them and a clash broke out. At this juncture, Tuan showed the people his police identity card, but the mob refused to accept it as genuine, the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reported.

Tuan then fired rubber bullets and his men attacked the crowd with batons, causing minor injuries to at least two people.

Acting on tip-offs from local residents, police from District 5's Ward 1 arrived at the scene and arrested Tuan.

Tuan's eight accomplices were arrested in the following days. Police are still tracking down 40-year-old Cao Tuan Minh, who is accused of tipping Tuan about the gambling den.

The arrestees confessed they had robbed several other gambling dens (all of which are illegal) in the city. Tuan has reportedly admitted that he was short of money and used his police identity to rob illegal gamblers.

Many of the accomplices are Tuan's relatives who were given meager sums of VND100,000 to VND200,000 each time, while Tuan and Minh raked in the lion shares, according to a VTC News report.

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