Officer probed in illegal release of drug trafficker

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An officer in the Mekong Delta province of Tra Vinh has been put under investigation for being allegedly involved in the illegal release of a drug trafficker, prosecutors said Monday.


Le Van Viet, chief of Tra Vinh Town's police division, will be prohibited from leaving his residential area while the investigation is ongoing, said the People's Supreme Procuracy, Vietnam's highest justice office.


Provincial police are considering dismissing Viet from his post as suggested by the People's Supreme Procuracy, Le Van Tu, chief of the office of Tra Vinh province's police, told VnExpress.


According to initial investigations, in September 2009, police in Tra Vinh Town arrested seven people belonging to a drug trafficking ring which was said to be biggest bust in the province to date. One of the arrested persons was later released on bail, pending a trial.


Three months later Viet proposed Tra Vinh Town's People's Procuracy to release another one, Huynh Le Hoang, on bail, and the proposal was approved by Nguyen Van Doan, deputy chief of the town's procuracy.


Viet failed to issue a ban on Hoang's leaving his residential area and register with related agencies the ban on his leaving the country as well, investigators said.


As a result, Hoang left for Japan via Ho Chi Minh City-based Tan Son Nhat International Airport in December, 2009.


Following the incident, Doan was dismissed from his post in January.


Investigations into the case are still under way.


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