More Agribank officials arrested in massive loan scam

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Police in Ho Chi Minh City have arrested two officials and a staff of Agribank for alleged involvement in a scam that misappropriated VND120 billion (US$5.73 million) from the state-owned bank.

 

Vo Duc Hung, head of assessment office, and Ngo Duc Tai, credit staff, both from Agribank's Tan Binh District branch, as well as Nguyen Minh Hoa, an auditor of the bank's southern representative office, are accused of violating loan regulations.

 

It is alleged that together with five other officials of Agribank, including Nguyen Tam, director of the Tan Binh District branch, the officials allowed Nguyen Thi Phuong Hoa, former  deputy sales manager of Reetech Refrigeration Electrical Engineering Joint-stock Company and Tran Huynh Nghia, director of the Cat Phuong Nam Company, to fake documents and get loans totaling VND120 billion between 2005 and 2008.

 

The five officials and Nghia were taken into custody last year, while Hoa is still at large.

 

Investigations into the case are continuing, police said.

 

In other news, investigators have confirmed that two officials of the Agribank Financial Leasing Company No.2 (ALCII) received tens of billions of dong in kickbacks from a businessman in a loan scam busted last weekend.

 

Initial investigations show that Vu Quoc Hao, former director general of ALCII, signed seven fake contracts to buy assets from Quang Vinh Construction and Trade Co., Ltd., headed by Dang Van Hai.

 

This allowed Hao to disburse over VND586 billion ($28 million) to Hai.

 

The disbursement was also illegal because ALCII was established as a company to buy and rent out equipment, investigators said.

 

Furthermore, Hai paid Hao several billion dong, and nearly VND1 billion ($47,801) to Ton Quang Viet, former head of ALCII's loan department, for their help.

 

The trio were arrested in HCMC and escorted to Hanoi for further investigations last weekend.

 

Agribank has said that since mid-2009, ALCII has committed violations in capital management and mobilization, leading to imbalances in its financial records of about VND7 trillion ($335.57 million).

 

State auditors had previously concluded that in 2009, the company had lost VND3 trillion ($143.4 million), 8.5 times its chartered capital.

 

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