A court in Hanoi Tuesday (August 3) handed down a three-year jail term to a former transport ministry official for misusing state-owned cars, costing the state VND2.7 billion (US$141,695).
Bui Tien Dung, a former director of the Ministry of Transport's Project Management Unit 18 (PMU18), was sentenced to a shorter imprisonment than proposed, because his abuse of state-owned cars was for work, not for personal benefit, the Hanoi People's Court said at the hearing.
The former official was convicted of "intentionally violating state regulations on economic management that has resulted in serious consequences."
The Supreme People's Procuracy, Vietnam's highest prosecutors' office, had previously proposed a four to six year jail term for Dung, who is presently serving a 13-year jail sentence handed down to him in 2007 for gambling and bribery in a separate case.
The court also sentenced Dung's subordinate, Vu Manh Tien, to two years in prison for forging documents to rent out cars and houses, pocketing hundreds of millions of dong in the process.
Three others were punished for collaborating with Dung.
Bui Thu Hanh, a former official from the accounting department, was sentenced to 14 months and five days that she had already served while in custody.
Nguyen Thanh Son, the former chief of project management department No.6 (PID6), received a two-year suspended sentence and four-year probationary period, while Le Thi Thanh Hoa, his subordinate, was given a 36-month suspended sentence and five-year probationary period.
All four former officials found guilty of "power abuse" were also ordered to return the money they pocketed.
They received punishments lighter than proposed due to declaring their crimes, having young children and suffering from fatal diseases, according to the court.