Phu Yen environmental chief sacked for graft

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Authorities in the central province of Phu Yen Tuesday announced that they have dismissed the director of the local environmental department for misappropriating a foreign-funded project.


According to the decision released by the Phu Yen's People's Committee, between 2007-2009, Nguyen Kim Phuc, Director of the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment, was at the helm of the VND13 billion ($667,693) project funded by Sweden.


The project was part of the SEMLA program a Swedish initiative to support environmental and natural resources programs in six provinces between 2004 and 2009.


Phuc, 53, and his subordinate Tran Thi Na forged documents to pocket tens of millions of dong from the project's fund.


Police say Phuc allowed his subordinates to do the same, siphoning hundreds of millions of dong from the project.


Phuc was also charged with "lacking responsiby" for illegally granting licenses and renting out lands to Son Dung Bao Co. Ltd. and R&F Co. Ltd. for eco-tourism projects, according to authorities.


Last month, Phuc and Na were expelled from Phu Yen's Party Unit for the violations.


A police investigation into the matter remains underway.


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