Vietnam official arrested for taking bribe to cut jail term

By Khanh Hoan, Thanh Nien News

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Vietnam official arrested for taking bribe to cut jail term
A legal official from the central province of Nghe An was arrested Thursday for taking a bribe to help a human trafficking defendant avoid his sentence.
Nguyen Ngoc Lan, 55, an official at the Legal Assistance Center of Nghe An Justice Department, was arrested for investigation under the charge of fraud.
The bribing family turned Lan in to the police after he allegedly accepted VND100 million (US$4,730) from them in late 2013 and refused to return the money after  telling them he could do nothing to help their relative.
They accused Lan of promising to help reduce the sentence on Vi Thi Hoa to suspended sentence or help her free to go after trial.
Hoa was arrested last May in Quang Ninh Province while she was preparing to bring several Vietnamese women across the border to China and sell them to brothels there.
Penalties for human trafficking range from two to twenty years in prison.
Lan has confirmed the family’s accusation and said he has the money on clearing debts and personal expenses.

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