Nine arrested in connection with bomb-trading syndicate

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Nine people in Tay Ninh Province have been arrested for attempting to sell salvaged unexploded ordnance (UXO) left over from the Vietnam War. 

Le Van Can, allegedly the ring leader, and an associate were arrested in Ho Chi Minh City on August 2 with 160 kilograms of explosive material.

When police searched Can's home, they found a number of undetonated artillery and mortar shells and four hand-made bombs.

Can, 46, claimed he purchased the explosives from a man in Long An Province for resale. Following his lead, police raided the home of Nguyen Van Soi, 25, in Long An Province and discovered another 65 kilograms of explosive.

Saws and drills were confiscated at the homes of four men who were suspected to be associates of Can.

On August 5, police arrested Tran Minh Quang, 34, of Phu Yen Province and Le Thanh Phuong, 43, of Quang Nam in the south central region.

The authorities said Phuong and Quang had purchased explosives from Can and planned to resell the explosive in central Vietnam.

Explosives have become a popular means of attacking officials who have attempted to crack down on Vietnam's organized crime syndicates.

On July 30, a bomb was set off in front of the house of Colonel Tran Ngoc Khanh, the police director of Khanh Hoa Province.

Police arrested Nguyen Viet Truong, 56, the following day, saying the explosion was meant to disrupt a police investigation into a dispute between Truong's rock quarrying company and a Ho Chi Minh City firm.


In February, a bomb went off in front of the home of Nguyen Viet Hung, vice director of Dien Bien Province's Department of Home Affairs in northern Vietnam.

The bomb destroyed Hung's home.

At the very beginning of the year, sappers damaged the home of Nguyen Nhu Tuan, the deputy police chief of Thai Nguyen Province.

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