Dinh La Thang and his accomplices at the court (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The High-Level People’s Court in Hanoi on June 26 upheld the charges and sentences against Dinh La Thang and five of his accomplices in the case involving the National Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam)’s contribution of 800 billion VND to the Ocean Commercial Joint Stock Bank (OceanBank).

Accordingly, Thang, former Chairman of the PetroVietnam Member Council, will serve 18 years in prison for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, causing severe consequences” as announced by the Hanoi People’s Court in March 2018.

Together with a jail sentence of 13 years handed down by the High-Level People’s Court in Hanoi on May 14, 2018 for his involvement in the case of “asset embezzlement” and “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, causing severe consequences” at PetroVietnam Construction JSC (PVC), Thang got a total of 30 years in jail.

The charges and sentences were also maintained for Nguyen Xuan Son, former Deputy General Director of PetroVietnam, Vu Khanh Truong and Nguyen Xuan Thang, both former members of the PetroVietnam Member Council.

In the first-instance trial, Son, Truong and Thang had received prison sentences of 30 months, five years and 22 months, respectively, for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, causing severe consequences.”

Nguyen Thanh Liem, also former member of the PetroVietnam Member Council, was upheld the penalty of non-custodial re-education for 20 months for the same charge.

Ninh Van Quynh,  former chief accountant and former head of the department of finance, accounting and auditing of PetroVietnam, will spend 23 years behind bars for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, causing severe consequences” and “abusing position and power to appropriate property” as decided by the first-instance court.

Only Phan Dinh Duc, former member of the PetroVietnam’s Member Council, had his charge changed into “lacking responsibility causing serious consequences” and got a warning instead of 15-month non-custodial re-education for “deliberately violating State regulations on economic management, causing severe consequences” given by the first instance court. Duc will also be exempted from civil obligations.

Apart from jail sentences, the court asked Dinh La Thang, Ninh Van Quynh and Vu Khanh Truong to compensate 600 billion VND, 100 billion VND and 40 billion VND. Nguyen Xuan Son, Nguyen Xuan Thang and Nguyen Thanh Liem, each has to refund 15 billion VND.

In 2008, after failing to establish Hong Viet Commercial Joint Stock Bank, PetroVietnam decided to invest in OceanBank.

From 2008 to 2011, Dinh La Thang instructed and decided on PetroVietnam’s investment in OceanBank to become a shareholder of the bank. 

Under his instruction, Vu Khanh Truong, Nguyen Thanh Liem, Nguyen Xuan Thang, Phan Dinh Duc, Nguyen Xuan Son and  Ninh Van Quynh carried out three contributions of the group’s capital totaling 800 billion VND to OceanBank.

Due to OceanBank’s poor capability and violations committed by Ha Van Tham, former Chairman of OceanBank’s Board of Directors, the bank suffered serious losses, leading to the loss of the whole 800 billion VND invested by PetroVietnam when the State Bank of Vietnam was forced to buy OceanBank at zero VND.-VNA