Vietnam official in the dock for using smuggled cars

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The Communist Party unit in Vietnam's Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang is considering punishing a commune chief for using two luxury cars allegedly smuggled in from Cambodia.

Tuoi Tre newspaper Wednesday quoted the Cho Gao District party committee as saying it had held a vote on punishing Cao Van The, secretary of the Binh Ninh Commune party unit, for violating norms related to party members' morals, attitudes, and lifestyles.

But since none of the proposed penalties disciplining, warning, or dismissal from the party got more than 50 percent of the votes, the committee has handed over the case to the provincial party inspectorate for consideration, the newspaper reported.

Van Ba Mai, chief of the Cho Gao police, was quoted as saying that the police have seized the cars in question, a Toyota RAV4 and a Lexus, for investigation.

The told them that two people in the neighboring province of An Giang had given him the vehicles as security for more than VND1.6 billion (US$67,000) they owed him since 2009.

The case came to light last week after Thanh Nien saw the RAV4 parked in front of the Binh Ninh Commune People's Committee with a Cambodian license plate.


Mekong Delta Party official found using luxury cars smuggled from Cambodia

When asked about the car's origin, The had made the same claim but failed to produce any papers to prove it. He also claimed that a provincial traffic police officer had told him he could use the cars.

Later it was also found that Nguyen Tan Thach, chief of the Binh Ninh Commune police, usually drove The to work.

The investigation is continuing.

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