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Vietnam Official Arrested for Role in Illegal Gambling

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Dang Anh Tuan, chief inspector of Vietnam’s Information Ministry, is the latest high-ranking government leader arrested by local authorities in connection with a $420 million online gambling operation.

Tuan, 49, was taken into custody Thursday and is suspected of violating laws on taking undue advantage of his government post — which he has held since 2015, according to Vn Express International.

He allegedly failed to act promptly after gambling violations were discovered as far back as 2016.
Details of the allegations were not immediately available.

As part of the inquiry, police searched his residence and office located in Hanoi.

Police in Phu Tho Province initially uncovered the gambling ring in 2016 after looking into a related fraud case. As their inquiry expanded, last year officials arrested Phan Van Vinh, a former director of the General Police Department, and Nguyen Thanh Hoa, a former director of the Department for High-Tech Crime Prevention.

The pair were put on trial and found guilty of “abusing power or position in the performance of official duties” Vinh was sentenced to nine years in prison. Hoa was sentenced to 10 years. Both were fined VND100 million (US $4,300).

Some 90 other defendants suspected of being involved with the illegal ring were charged with such crimes as: organizing gambling, money laundering, illegal trading of invoices, and using the internet to appropriate assets, the news report said. Seventeen of the suspects were fined VND40 million (US $1,724) each, 22 were given probation and the rest received up to a three years’ sentence in prison.

The ring, started in 2015, generated over VND9.8 trillion (US $426 million) and had nearly 43 million users.

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