Vietnam Real Estate Tycoon billion dollar Fraud

State media in Vietnam reported that Vietnamese real estate tycoon Truong My Lan was sentenced to death by a court on Thursday for her involvement in a massive financial fraud case worth 304 trillion dong ($12.46 billion), the largest ever in the country’s history.

This 67-year-old Vietnamese property developer was sentenced to death on Thursday for looting one of the country’s largest banks over a period of 11 years.

Following a trial in Ho Chi Minh City, Lan, the chairwoman of Van Thinh Phat Holdings Group, a prominent real estate developer, was found guilty of embezzlement, bribery, and breaching banking regulations, according to state media reports.

Truong My Lan could face death for embezzling $12.5 billion from Saigon Commercial Bank (SCB) over a decade.

Between 2012 and 2022, Lan illegally controlled the Saigon Commercial Bank to siphon off funds through thousands of ghost companies and by paying bribes to government officials.

Lan’s arrest was among the most high-profile in a sweeping anti-corruption drive that has intensified since 2022. The drive, ‘Blazing Furnace’ campaign, has not even spared top Vietnamese politicians.

The trial, which commenced on March 5 and concluded earlier than anticipated, forms part of an anti-corruption drive spearheaded by Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party leader, Nguyen Phu Trong. Despite longstanding pledges to combat corruption, tangible outcomes have been limited.

Hundreds of prominent business leaders and top governmental officials have been forced to resign or face legal action as a result of the “blazing furnace” crackdown.

A string of large corporate arrests caused Vietnamese equities to crash by $40 billion at one point in 2022, shaking investor confidence at a critical juncture for the rapidly expanding economy.

It was not immediately possible to reach Lan’s attorneys for comment.

Investigators said that Lan and her allies had embezzled more than 304 trillion dong from Saigon Commercial Bank, or SCB, which she effectively controlled through a network of proxies.

Investigators claim that from early 2018 and October 2022, when the state bailed out SCB due to a run on its deposits, Lan embezzled substantial quantities of money by setting up illegal loans to shell firms.

Lan will appeal the verdict, a family member told the reporters.

By Jammy

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