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Officials at foreign ministry’s consular dept arrested for allegedly taking bribes

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Nguyen Thi Huong Lan, head of the Consular Department under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and three other officials of the department have been detained for allegedly taking bribes.

On January 28, the Investigative Police Agency under the Ministry of Public Security said it had filed charges against Lan; Do Hoang Tung, deputy head of the Consular Department; Le Tuan Anh, head of the department’s office; and Luu Tuan Dung, deputy head of the citizen protection division at the department. They have been accused of allegedly accepting bribes while licensing companies conducting repatriation flights for Vietnamese people stranded abroad during the pandemic.

According to the Investigative Police Agency, in 2021, word about the high prices of tickets for repatriation flights was circulating on social media, the local media reported.

At a press briefing on January 20, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang said those abusing these flights to make illegal gains must face strict penalties in line with the law.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs had also warned residents against contacting unidentified individuals and organizations and unofficial portals or working with intermediaries.

According to the ministry, more than 800 flights repatriating nearly 20,000 Vietnamese citizens from over 60 countries and territories have been operated over the past two years.

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