Vietnam court sentences Cambodian to life for $1.3 mln fraud

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The Supreme People's Court in Ho Chi Minh City Thursday upheld the life sentence handed down earlier this year to a Cambodian man for cheating eight Vietnamese companies out of US$1.3 million.

Keo Sovann, 51, and another Cambodian named Heng Narong, who is still at large, came to Vietnam in 2007. Keo posed as the general director of KSV Development Co Ltd and Narong as an employee.

The duo reportedly forged some documents to prove his company had $2 billion deposited at Barclays Bank.

With the help of Le Xuan Tao, director of a company in Quang Ninh, Keo approached some Vietnamese businesses and offered to lend money at an annual interest rate of 1.5 percent.

In exchange, Keo Sovann asked the businesses to pay 0.1 percent for money transfer fee and a 10 percent commission.

Eight companies paid him around $1.3 million.

They complained to the police after realizing they had been cheated, and he was arrested in HCMC in early 2008. Tao is still at large.

In March 2012, March the HCMC People's Court sentenced Keo to life for fraud.

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