Police in Hanoi have fined a central government official VND12.5 million (US$585) for insulting a traffic cop who attempted to cite him for drunkenly crashing into a motorbike.
Ba Dinh District Police issued a statement on Wednesday announcing that Nguyen Dinh Hung, 40, of the Ministry of Interior, rear-ended a motorbike at a red light on the night of December 11.
The motorist was slightly injured.
When a team of traffic cops led by Lieutenant Tran Van Cong arrived to resolve the accident, Hung began cursing and brandishing his government identification.
A breathalyzer test logged Hung’s blood alcohol level at over 1.0; the maximum level allowed is 0.4.
The officers impounded Cong's car and only returned it after he paid his fine.
In January 2013, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked all the 63 provinces in the country to enforce the ban on public officials drinking during working hours. Phuc had ordered a similar ban in March 2012, but it was not heeded, apparently.
A number of laws and regulations Vietnam has passed have not been strictly enforced because they lacked the implementation guidelines and personnel needed, officials say.
In November, the Communist Party unit of the southern Binh Phuoc Province issued warnings and reprimands to two senior local officials who engaged in a drunken karaoke brawl that sent one to the hospital last summer.