A court in the southern province of An Giang sentenced five local high school officials to serious jail time on Friday.
Two of the convicts once occupied the senior-most positions at the province's school management board; all were found guilty of misappropriating public funds.
Van Cong Hien, ex-president of the Cao Ba Quat High School in Tinh Bien District, was sentenced to 16 years imprisonment; a senior accountant was sentenced to 17 years in prison.
Hien’s deputy Nguyen Thi Lieu was sentenced to 15 years in prison, while two other officials who participated in their scheme got 11-years and 13-years respectively.
According to the indictment read before the court, the defendants falsified the registration of numerous “ghost” ethnic minority students at the school and collected their subsidies. In reality, they provided no government subsidies to students for entire years at a time. At others, they provided rations and other subsidies in outmoded quantities.
The group was found guilty of leeching more than VND 1.35 billion (around US$67,500) from a student allowance fund.