Iranian gang busted for alleged robbery in Vietnam

By Quoc Thang   August 5, 2016 | 06:21 pm GMT+7
Iranian gang busted for alleged robbery in Vietnam
The three Iranians in police custody for their alleged involvement in a number of robberies in Vietnam. Photo courtesy of police

A brave taxi driver got caught up in a scene from a Hollywood movie.

Three Iranians have been arrested by Ho Chi Minh City police and handed over to enforcement authorities in the central province of Ninh Thuan for questioning about their alleged involvement in two robberies.

On August 3, Phan Minh Phung, the driver of a 16-seater taxi, said he was hired by three foreigners to transport them to HCMC for $200. While Phung was driving, he received a call from Ninh Thuan police informing him about the trio and ordered him to take them to the nearest police station.

Phung intended to stop the car but the foreign group allegedly used weapons to threaten him, forcing him to keep going. 

After traveling for hundreds of kilometers to Suoi Tien, a tourist site in District 9 in Ho Chi Minh City, Phung saw a traffic police unit. The driver quickly jammed on the brakes before jumping out of the car and running to the officers. The three Iranians tried to flee the scene but were captured shortly after by the police and local people.  

A preliminary investigation found the three Iranian men, who have not been identified, had driven a car from HCMC to Ninh Thuan on August 3. There the trio, disguised as customers in need of currency exchange, robbed money from a local grocery store.

They then abandoned the car and hired the 16-seater to return to HCMC the same day. Authorities suspect that the group is responsible for a number of other robberies.

Ninh Thuan is 350 kilometers (217 miles) to the northeast of HCMC.

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