Ij reportika Logo

Van Thinh Phat chairwoman sentenced to death in Vietnam’s biggest fraud trial

Truong My Lan, the chairwoman of Vietnamese developer Van Thinh Phat, has been sentenced to death for masterminding a multi-billion-dollar fraud, state-controlled media reported Thursday.

Judges at Ho Chi Minh City’s People’s Court said she was guilty of bribery, embezzlement and violating banking regulations.

Lan owned a 91.5% stake in Saigon Commercial Bank and, over the course of 10 years, ordered bank officials to approve more than 2,500 loans to shell companies she controlled, causing the bank to lose the equivalent of US$27 billion.

Lan ordered subordinates to bribe auditors at the State Bank of Vietnam to cover her tracks.

Head banking inspector Do Thi Nhan received $5.2 million in bribes, while deputy chief inspector Nguyen Van Hung received $300,000, state media said.

A family member told Reuters Lan planned to appeal the verdict.

Edited by Elaine Chan.