Lawyers want VietinBank execs to show up at Kien’s trial

Defense attorneys have suggested summoning some leaders of Vietnam Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade (VietinBank) to the hearing of a case against Nguyen Duc Kien, former vice chairman of Asia Commercial Bank (ACB), which resumes today.

Earlier, Kien’s trial on April 16 was postponed as one of the defendants, Tran Xuan Gia, former ACB chairman, was absent due to poor health.

Kien is charged with four offences - asset appropriation, intentional violations of the State’s economic management regulations causing serious consequences, tax evasion and illegal trading.

In a note sent to the Hanoi People’s Court, the Hanoi People’s Procuracy and Nguyen Huu Chinh, deputy head of the Hanoi People’s Court who will preside over the hearing tomorrow, lawyers have suggested the former chairperson, the CEO, chief accountant and the chief controller of VietinBank appear at court.

Some ACB officials were found to assign their staff to deposit the bank’s money in other banks to enjoy higher interest rates. However, the VND719-billion deposit of ACB at VietinBank was appropriated by Huynh Thi Huyen Nhu, former deputy head of the Risk Management Department of VietinBank.

The summons is aimed to clarify issues related to the deposits such as interest payments.

The lawyers also stressed the need to summon nine individuals who undersigned the fake certificates of deposit at VietinBank and 27 organizations and individuals who had received money Nhu appropriated from ACB.

After the trial of Nhu on January 8, a VietinBank leader told Vnexpress that the money individuals and enterprises deposited via Nhu’s arrangements had not been entered into accounts in VietinBank’s system.

However, ACB on January 17 presented to the court a certificate signed by Nguyen Thi Ngan, deputy director of VietinBank’s HCMC branch, showing that the account of Pham Cong Hoang, an ACB staff, ran a balance of VND950 million as of January 8.

According to lawyer Luu Van Tam who represents ACB, the certificate proved that the ACB’s deposit account at VietinBank still existed, not having been appropriated by Nhu. Therefore, the issue needs clarifying by VietinBank.

Last week, State President Truong Tan Sang asked law enforcement agencies to scrutinize the case of Nhu to make clear violations of Nhu, other defendants and related persons and organizations.

Nhu was sentenced to life imprisonment for swindling to appropriate assets and counterfeiting seals and materials of agencies and organizations.

ACB, nguyen duc kien, court