The Ministry of Public Security's economic crime department (C46B) on Monday confiscated US$500,000 and more than VND10 billion ($476,190) in an illegal foreign exchange trade busted last month in Ho Chi Minh City.
In its report on Tuesday, Tuoi Tre quoted C46B as saying that the money will be submitted to the state budget, while the seller and the buyer will be fined a total of VND150 million ($7,142).
According to C46B, on November 28, it caught Vu Quoc Dat, vice director of Minh Phuc Transport, Trade and Service Co. Ltd., illegally selling $500,000 to Huynh Thanh Nhat Hieu and Phan Anh Hue, both employees of Kim Mai Gold Shop.
The trade was conducted at a transaction counter of Eximbank in Phu Nhuan District, C46B said. The department then confiscated the dollars along with more than VND10 billion.
Initial information provided by the three people was that Minh Phuc Co.'s director, whose name wasn't revealed, ordered Dat to sell the dollars to Hieu and Hue at the exchange rate of VND21,260 per dollar.
Dat was supposed to send the money from the trade to his company's bank account, while the others were supposed to send the dollars to their employer's bank account.
However, later Dat revised his previous claims, saying that his superior ordered him to sell the dollars to the Eximbank counter, but he offered to sell them to Kim Mai shop to enjoy a higher exchange rate.
Meanwhile, Kim Mai gold shop claimed that the money Hieu and Hue used to buy the dollars wasn't provided by the shop, Tuoi Tre reported.
Since early this year, Vietnam has cracked down hard on illegal dollar hoarding and trading in an effort to stabilize the currency market.