Hanoi police arrested two men who allegedly forged Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung's signature in order to swindle nearly VND100 billion (US$4.7 million) from distressed project investors.
Tran Ngoc Quyet, 61, of Nam Dinh Province and Phan Ngoc Thuc, 43, of Ha Giang Province were arrested Tuesday as part of an investigation into the multi-million dollar scheme, according to Hoang Mai District police.
Police say the duo forged Dung's signature on many documents while conning project investors throughout the country.
Police say the two men have confessed to an elaborate scheme that went as follows.
Thuc allegedly studied construction and other projects that had run short of funds.
Meanwhile, Quyet allegedly forged documents that helped them pose as officials from the central government’s Project Management Unit tasked with overseeing social welfare projects.
Police say the duo also confessed to buying a car emblazoned with a fake central government license plate (coded 80B with a blue background) that they used to meet with their victims.
Thuc and Quyet allegedly assured distressed investors that they could easily grease the approval of their applications for state funds.
They then reportedly demanded kickbacks from their victims in exchange for their alleged help.
Quyet often identified himself as the head of the Project Management Unit and Thuc posed as his subordinate.
They even promised a number of contractors they would secure them procurement contracts in exchange for bribes.
Police have already seized two cars, a laptop, three printers, a scanner, two stamps and forged documents that pertained to 35 projects nationwide in the course of their ongoing investigation.