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Two former ministers to stand trial in Viet A case tomorrow

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Former Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long and former Minister of Science and Technology Chu Ngoc Anh, along with 36 other defendants, will stand trial on January 3 in the Viet A Covid-19 test kit price gouging case.

The trial is expected to last 20 days at the Hanoi City People’s Court, with Judge Tran Nam Ha presiding.

The two former ministers are accused of accepting bribes and violating regulations on the management and use of State assets in the test kit case.

Phan Quoc Viet, founder and general director of Viet A Technology Corporation and the mastermind behind the case, faces charges of violating bidding regulations resulting in serious consequences and giving bribes.

Other defendants are also facing charges related to giving bribes, violating bidding regulations, and abusing powers for personal gain.

Viet was previously sentenced to 25 years in prison for abusing his power and violating bidding regulations at the December 27-29 trial conducted by the military court of Hanoi. The trial was conducted against Viet and other six defendants for their violations in the process of issuing permits for circulation of Covid test kits.

The indictment said that Viet offered bribes exceeding VND100 billion to participate in a test kit research project during the Covid outbreak, obtain licenses for test kit circulation, and manipulate test kit prices.

Former Minister Long allegedly received US$2.25 million (about VND51 billion) in bribes, while Chu Ngoc Anh accepted bribes worth US$200,000.

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