Vietnam cops charged with plotting murder to silence bribery witness

By Thai Son-Duc Hoa, Thanh Nien News

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Three suspended police officers in the northern province of Thai Nguyen have been indicted for allegedly planning to kidnap the girlfriend of a murder accused for blowing the whistle on their bribery.
Nguyen Viet Hoa, Nguyen Duc Chinh, and Ha Huy Hoang of the warrant enforcement department have been charged with abusing their authority, bribery, harboring criminals, and slander.
The Supreme People's Procuracy filed the same charges against two Hanoi thugs Hoa had allegedly enlisted to--among other things-- bomb the person investigating their kidnap plot.
Prosecutors said that in December 2012 Hoa and Chinh tracked Tran Van Hung, wanted for murder with an illegal weapon, to the home of his girlfriend Dinh Thi Thanh Loan in a neighboring province and apprehended him.

Tran Van Hung, a murder suspect, allegedly paid police officers in the northern province of Thai Nguyen US$92,000 to be allowed to escape. Photo credit: Thai Nguyen Police

He offered the two officers VND2.5 billion ($115,000) for letting him go, but Hoa told him they could not free him because they had already reported the arrest to their bosses.
In the end Hung paid VND2 billion to not record the fact that Loan had harbored him, with the officers obligingly claiming that they had caught Hung on the street.
Hoa gave Chinh VND150 million ($6,900) from the bribe amount, according to the indictment.
Loan later filed a complaint with the police, accusing Hoa of having taken a bribe. Details become a bit sketchy at this point but the officer returned VND1.7 billion ($78,500) to her, but was still arrested pending an investigation.
Prosecutors said that from jail Hoa wrote to Chinh to implore him to maintain their account of Hung's arrest.
He also wrote several letters to Hoang, another officer, and Ho Anh Luu and Pham Van Chien in Hanoi, telling them to intimidate Loan into withdrawing her complaint.
Prosecutors said he told the men to either kill or kidnap the woman if she refused to comply.
They also said Chien intended to plant a bomb in the house of the chief investigator probing the case.
After Loan and her son went into hiding, Hoa’s two henchmen allegedly posed as Loan and wrote to the police claiming to have been tortured during interrogation to frame Hoa.
Prosecutors have also pressed charges of “procuring bribery” against Hoang Van Luan, a retired public servant in Hanoi, for allegedly accepting VND700 million ($32,000) from Hung to help him escape the charges.

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