Ho Chi Minh City police said Wednesday that a journalist arrested four months earlier on suspicion of bribing a policeman while writing an expose of corruption among police officers, will be detained for another three months, the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reported.
Nguyen Van Khuong, a reporter with Tuoi Tre who wrote under the pen name Hoang Khuong, will be detained pending police assessment of voice records seized at his private residence, the report said.
The three-month extension of detention will also apply for Huynh Minh Duc, former officer of Binh Thanh District's traffic police division, who allegedly received bribes from Khuong, Ton That Hoa, a broker, and Nguyen Duc Dong Anh, Khuong's brother-in-law, for his involvement in the case.
Duc was arrested on November 18 last year for taking bribes from a traffic violator, after Khuong exposed his acts in articles published in July.
In June, Duc accepted bribes from Tran Anh Tuan, the owner of a trailer truck that had been seized following an accident. In return, he allowed Tuan to take the truck back.
Ton That Hoa, director of Duy Nguyen Co., was arrested for brokering the bribe. Meanwhile, Tuan was let free while being investigated on charges of "giving bribes."
On January 2, Khuong was arrested after police concluded Hoa received money from Tuan and Khuong to pay Duc.
Following the arrest, the Tuoi Tre newspaper has twice asked the HCMC Police Department to let Khuong out on bail given his health condition, but the request has been denied.
In a February press conference, an official of the department said police would release conclusions about the case in March, but no further information has been made available so far.