Nghe An police arrest 13 people in bribery crackdown

Vehicle registration center staff are accused of taking money to declare faulty vehicles roadworthy.
By RFA Vietnamese
2023.02.06
Nghe An police arrest 13 people in bribery crackdown The headquarters of Vietnam Register in Hanoi.
Communist Party of Vietnam

Nghe An Provincial Police have arrested 13 people for allegedly brokering and receiving bribes.

Sunday’s arrests include a director and two deputy directors at vehicle registration centers in the province on Vietnam’s north central coast.

The police said an investigation discovered high level staff were asking customers for between VND200,000 and VND1 million (U.S.$9-U.S.$43) to register vehicles with poor emission standards, worn tires, faulty brakes and broken lights.

Car owners who wanted to fast-track registration were asked to pay at least VND200,000.

The arrests are part of a nationwide crackdown on corrupt staff at Vietnam Register. The investigation has resulted in 120 people being investigated for offenses including giving and taking bribes and forging documents. They include a director and former director of the national vehicle registration body.

Vietnam Register Director Dang Viet Ha was charged with bribery on Jan. 11. Five days later, Transport Minister Nguyen Van Thang called a conference to review the work of Vietnam Register and described the corruption there as “painful” and “criminal protection.”

The Communist Party of Vietnam has vowed to crack down even harder on corrupt officials this year after a series of investigations in 2022 into a COVID-19 testing kit bribery scandal, a repatriation flights bribery scandal and real estate scams.

The crackdown on the two COVID corruption cases led to Vietnam’s president and two deputy prime ministers being forced to step down last month for allowing corruption on their watch.

Translated by RFA Vietnamese. Edited by Mike Firn.

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