Vietnamese Property Tycoon Sentenced to Death in $12.5bn Financial Fraud Case

Truong My Lan, chair of major developer Van Thinh Phat, has been sentenced to death by a court in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, over her role in the country’s largest financial fraud case on record. The 67-year-old real estate tycoon was found guilty of embezzlement, bribery, and violations of banking rules at the end of a trial, according to state media reports.

Lan’s sentencing follows a thorough trial that lasted several weeks, during which she was found guilty of a litany of charges including embezzlement, bribery, and violations of banking regulations. The charges stemmed from her illicit control of Saigon Joint Stock Commercial Bank (SCB) from 2012 to 2022, during which she orchestrated a complex scheme resulting in immense financial losses for the bank.

Lan’s illegal control of Saigon Joint Stock Commercial Bank from 2012 to 2022 led to 2,500 loans resulting in $27 billion in losses for the bank, while she siphoned off $12.5 billion, nearly 3% of Vietnam’s 2022 GDP. The court ordered her to compensate the bank $26.9 million.

This landmark trial, involving 85 other defendants, saw four individuals receive life sentences, while others received prison terms ranging from 20 years to three years suspended. Lan’s husband and niece also received jail terms of nine and 17 years, respectively.

The case, part of Vietnam’s anti-corruption campaign led by Communist Party Secretary-General Nguyen Phu Trong, reflects a crackdown on corruption that has seen high-profile resignations and prosecutions in recent years.

Lan’s rise from a market stall vendor to a prominent business figure in Ho Chi Minh City underscores the pervasive nature of corruption in Vietnam’s business and political spheres. Her sentencing highlights the government’s efforts to reassert control over the country’s financial industry and combat endemic corruption.

Despite the severity of the verdict, Lan’s family intends to appeal the decision. The case has sparked discussions about the extent of corruption in Vietnam and its impact on the economy, particularly in the real estate sector.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *