Arrest warrant issued for former PVC chair
The Saigon Times Daily
Trinh Xuan Thanh (L) and Vu Duc Thuan are seen at a press conference of PetroVietnam Construction JSC (PVC) in 2011. The Ministry of Public Security has issued an international arrest warrant for Trinh Xuan Thanh while the police have arrested Vu Duc Thuan over VND3.3 trillion losses at PVC - PHOTO: VIETNAMPLUS
HCMC - The Ministry of Public Security has issued an international arrest warrant for a former chairman of PetroVietnam Construction JSC (PVC) amid a high-profile probe into losses of VND3.3 trillion (US$148 million) at the company.
Trinh Xuan Thanh, 50, is accused of deliberately violating the State’s regulations on economic management, causing serious consequences.
The arrest warrant comes after the Party Inspection Commission last week announced a September 9 decision by the Secretariat of the Party Central Committee to expel him from the Communist Party of Vietnam, and after the police detained four other executives of the company, including former PVC general director Vu Duc Thuan.
International arrest warrants are issued when the police believe suspects already flee the country.
The ministry’s investigation covers a period from 2011 to 2013, when the five executives were working for PVC in which State-owned oil and gas giant Vietnam Oil and Gas Group, or PetroVietnam, holds a controlling stake.
Thanh left the company in 2013 without having to face any consequences of the firm’s huge losses. He then assumed key positions at the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the government and Party committee of Hau Giang Province, and was even elected as a member of the National Assembly.
The other three now detained by the police are former deputy general director Truong Quoc Dung, former chief accountant Pham Tien Dat and deputy general director Nguyen Manh Tien.
The five are charged with wrongdoing that led PVC to lose nearly VND3.3 trillion while they were at the helm of the enterprise.
In 2007-2013, Thanh served as deputy secretary of the Party committee and director general at PVC, and later became secretary of the corporation’s Party committee and board chairman.
In 2009, Thanh and other PVC board members established Petroleum Machine Executing Co Ltd (PVC-ME) with chartered capital of VND500 billion. PVC held a 40% stake in PVC-ME.
For the contracts which it won, PVC-ME passed them on to sub-constructors to take commissions. In mid-September 2012, the police charged 15 people with irregularities at PVC-ME.
PVC-ME suffered losses of over VND576 billion as of 2012, causing all its equity to vanish. Its debts amounted to hundreds of billions of dong.
After Thanh left PVC in September 2013, he was appointed deputy office manager of the Ministry of Industry and Trade and head of the ministry’s representative office in Danang. However, just a month later, Thanh was promoted to the post of head of the ministry’s Enterprise Reform Department.
In May 2015, Thanh was appointed vice chairman of the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang in the 2011-2016 term.
In late May this year, he was found to use a private Lexus 570 SUV worth around VND6 billion to go to work. But the car had a blue number plate which, under the current regulations, can only be issued for a State-owned vehicle.
On June 9, Thanh won the National Assembly election. However, the Party Central Committee Office on the same day issued a statement saying Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong had ordered a probe into PVC’s huge losses in 2011-2013 when Thanh was serving as chairman, and his alleged infringements of rules.
On July 11, the Central Inspection Commission proposed determining responsibilities of individuals and organizations for irregularities at PVC. The commission also asked for not recognizing Thanh as a NA deputy and the National Election Council decided on July 15 to invalidate his NA election.
At a meeting on September 6-8, the Central Inspection Commission called for the Secretariat to dismiss Thanh from the Party. All the members of the Secretariat voted for his expulsion from the Party.
The Secretariat pointed out his serious wrongdoing and law violations, saying they negatively affected the prestige of the Party, State and himself.
Vu Duc Thuan, 45, used to serve as general director of Song Da Urban and Industrial Zone Investment and Development JSC under Song Da Corporation. He was dismissed in 2008, two years after his appointment.
Thuan was appointed general director of PVC in 2009. In early 2013, he took up the post of head of the construction division at Vietnam Nation Oil and Gas Group.
In October 2013, Thuan was appointed deputy director of the Department of Transport in Thai Binh Province. In March 2013, Thuan became head of the administrative office at the Ministry of Transport.
Since the end of March this year, Thuan had moved to HCMC. In mid-June, the Transport Ministry picked Nguyen Tri Duc as deputy head of the office to replace Thuan.