Four ACB executives taken into custody pending trial

By Ha An, Thanh Nien News

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Pham Trung Cang, a former deputy chairman of ACB, being brought to a hearing on the bank's illegal deposit of nearly VND719 billion on April 16.



Four former Asia Commercial Bank (ACB) executives who were allegedly involved in the institution's illicit deposit of nearly VND719 billion (US$34 million) at another bank in 2011 have been taken into custody, pending trial. 
Hanoi People’s Court ordered the arrest of former ACB deputy chairmen Trinh Kim Quang, Le Vu Ky, and Pham Trung Cang, and former board member Huynh Quang Tuan, after suspending their trial on April 16 at the request of another defendant Tran Xuan Gia, who was being treated at a local hospital for high blood pressure.
All five of the suspects who were charged with “intentionally violating state regulations on economic management” had been allowed to remain free during the investigation.
It is not known when the trial will resume.
According to the indictment, they conspired with ACB former CEO Ly Xuan Hai and co-founder Nguyen Duc Kien (both of whom were arrested in August 2012) to  illegally approve a deposit of nearly VND719 billion in ACB funds at Vietinbank's Ho Chi Minh City and Nha Be branches between June and November 2011.
The deposit earned an interest rate of 14 percent annually plus an additional 3.7-13 percent, prosecutors said.
In Vietnam, banks are prohibited from depositing money in other banks to accrue interest; additionally, the central bank had set a 14 percent interest rate cap during the period in question.
The ACB funds deposited at Vietinbank were later stolen by Huynh Thi Huyen Nhu, former chief of Vietinbank's Dien Bien Phu branch in Ho Chi Minh City.
The HCMC People’s Court sentenced Nhu to life for cheating local banks, companies and individuals out of nearly VND4 trillion ($189.3 million) on January 27.
Kien, listed as one of Vietnam’s 100 richest men in 2010, was also charged with “engaging in illegal business activities,” fraud, and tax evasion at his six companies, including ACB Hanoi Investment Joint Stock Company (ACBI).
ACBI director Tran Ngoc Thanh, and chief accountant Nguyen Thi Hai Yen face charges of fraud and have been in custody since 2012.

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