Ex-cop accused of taking $1M bribes from businessman under investigation for selling tax invoices

By Gia Minh   February 21, 2024 | 06:33 pm PT
Ex-cop accused of taking $1M bribes from businessman under investigation for selling tax invoices
Do Huu Ca when he was director of Hai Phong City's Police Department. Photo by VnExpress/Le Tan
A former Hai Phong City police chief has been indicted for allegedly taking bribes from a businessman who sold tax invoices after falsely promising to help him avoid imprisonment.

According to the indictment by prosecutors in neighboring Quang Ninh Province, Major General Do Huu Ca, 66, is charged with fraudulent appropriation of property for taking a bribe of VND35 billion (US$1.43 million) from Truong Xuan Duoc, 52.

He had been director of the Hai Phong Police Department from 2010 to 2018.

The indictment said between 2014 and 2021 Duoc and his wife Truong Thi Ngoc Anh, 45, established 26 companies to illegally sell value-added tax invoices in Quang Ninh and Hai Phong.

In October 2022, on hearing that the Quang Ninh police were investigating their companies' activities, Duoc went into hiding and told his wife to seek assistance from Ca, a close acquaintance of hers.

She met Ca at his house in Hai Phong and pleaded with him to "influence the case."

When he came to know the company's VAT invoice sales had been worth around VND200 billion, he asked for 10% of that and some other "expenses" to take care of the case.

On Oct. 31 Duoc withdrew VND8 billion from his bank account and borrowed VND2 billion from a friend for his wife to take to Ca.

Anh told Ca they could only manage VND10 billion but he should continue to help then, and he agreed.

A week later, after getting no information about the case's progress, Duoc became anxious and got another VND5 billion and asked a friend to deliver it to Ca's house.

He also discussed with the former cop about giving him more money.

Then, since the companies were still under investigation, Duoc paid another VND15 billion on Nov. 11 after getting a bank overdraft.

This amount was taken to Ca's house by Duoc's wife and a bank employee.

This time "Ca told Ngoc Anh to go home and he would take care of things," the indictment said.

Duoc felt things were not moving and so instructed his wife to take another VND5 billion to Ca on Dec. 1 after getting another overdraft.

Anh told Ca the situation was critical.

Ca then spoke with Duoc, and told him to meet him.

The next day Duoc and his wife visited Ca’s house and heard he had not received any information from the Quang Ninh Police. He asked the couple to lay low at his own house, but they refused.

Just before Lunar New Year in January 2023 they went to Ca's house again to inquire about the case's progress.

He told them he had "taken care of things" at the Hai Phong Police, and in Quang Ninh had asked a man named Giang to handle things.

He offered to arrange a meeting between them and Giang.

He then Ca told Duoc to "go home and celebrate Tet without worrying."

They trusted Ca and decided not to go to Quang Ninh to meet Giang.

Instead they returned to Duoc’s home in Hai Phong to celebrate Tet with his family.

On Feb. 3 Duoc was arrested by the Quang Ninh police.

His wife then went to Ca's house to ask for the VND35 billion back, but he refused and even scolded her.

On Feb. 7 she was arrested for illegally selling invoices and documents related to state budget revenue.

Less than two weeks later the Quang Ninh police arrested Ca.

During questioning, Ca admitted that he had received VND35 billion of cash that Duoc and Anh had brought to his house, but did not admit to taking the money to influence the case, saying he "had retired long ago, had few relationships, and no longer had the ability to influence the case."

He also returned the amount.

The police searched his house, found and seized a large amount of cash, jewelry, gold, and land-use certificates.

Ca and his wife claimed the assets were acquired through savings during their careers, inheritance and festival gifts from real estate businesses.

According to the indictment, Duoc and his wife earned more than VND41 billion by illegally selling invoices.

They also paid bribes of VND362 million to Nguyen Dinh Duong, then the head of the tax department of Hai Phong’s Cat Hai District, and Do Thanh Hoai, a tax official.

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