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Sentences for OceanBank's three former leaders upheld

Released at: 17:52, 05/05/2018

Sentences for OceanBank's three former leaders upheld

Former Chairman of the Board of Directors of OceanBank Ha Van Tham (first, right) and former General Director of OceanBank Nguyen Xuan Son (third, right) at the appeal trial (Photo: VNA)

According to the verdict that was announced on May 4, the charges and sentences for OceanBank's three former leaders remain unchanged.

by Van Long

On May 4, the High-level People’s Court in Hanoi upheld the previous charges and sentences of three former leaders of the Ocean Commercial Joint Stock Bank (OceanBank) for their wrongdoings at the bank, according to a report from the Vietnam News Agency (VNA).

The court upheld the verdict on Ha Van Tham, former Chairman of the Board of Directors of OceanBank, who was sentenced to life imprisonment. The sentence includes 19 years in prison for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences,” 18 years in prison for “breaching lending regulations of credit institutions,” life imprisonment for “property embezzlement,” and 20 years in prison for “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets.”

The death penalty for Nguyen Xuan Son, former Director General of OceanBank, was also upheld. He received 17 years in prison for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences,” the death penalty for “property embezzlement,” and life imprisonment for “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets.”
 

Son has the right to submit a plea for clemency to the State President. He was given one week from the day the appeal trial announced its verdict to do this.

After considering Son’s sincere confession, his family’s compensation for consequences at the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group due to his “property embezzlement,” and a few other factors, the jury asked the Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court, the Prosecutor General of the Supreme People’s Procuracy and the State President to consider converting Son’s punishment from the death penalty to life imprisonment as regulated in Point C, Clause 3 and Clause 4 of Article 40 in the 2015 Penal Code.

The jury also took into consideration the unstable financial market when Tham committed the irregularities, his sincere confession and other factors. It asked authorized agencies to apply mitigative conditions to reduce Tham’s punishment from life imprisonment to fixed-term imprisonment.

The 22-year imprisonment sentence was also upheld for former General Director of OceanBank Nguyen Minh Thu. She will be imprisoned for nine years for “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets” and 13 years for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences.”

Meanwhile, Nguyen Van Hoan, former Deputy General Director of OceanBank, will be sentenced to 20 years in prison (down two years from the first trial’s verdict) for “abusing positions and power to appropriate assets” and “breaching lending regulations of credit institutions.”

Six other defendants who were accused of “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management causing severe consequences” also received reductions in their sentences.

During the investigation and at the trial, Nguyen Thi Thu Ba (former director of the retail client division) and Do Dai Khoi Trang (former director of the individual client division) said that their wrongdoings had been made under the direction of Deputy General Director Tran Thanh Quang. Upon hearing this, the jury asked the investigation police agency of the Ministry of Public Security to launch criminal proceedings against Quang to probe into his involvement.

According to the court’s verdict, when he was working as Chairman of the Board of Directors of OceanBank, Tham and his accomplices committed a series of violations of credit regulations, causing losses for the bank and seriously affecting the State’s monetary policy. Their violations resulted in losses of nearly VND2 trillion (equivalent to $87.7 million at present) for OceanBank.

Son was found to have coordinated with Tham to charge customers additional fees, triggering a loss of nearly VND69 billion ($3.02 million) for the bank and customers. Nguyen Minh Thu had instructed the bank’s branches to pay interest rates outside the mobilizing deposit contracts, causing losses of VND1.576 trillion ($69 million).

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