Former police officer falsified documents at karaoke parlor where fire killed 32

By Phuoc Tuan   June 19, 2024 | 01:42 am PT
Former police officer falsified documents at karaoke parlor where fire killed 32
A firefighter at the site of the An Phu karaoke parlor fire in Binh Duong, September 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Phuoc Tuan
A former police officer was accused of falsifying documents during the evaluation of the firefighting systems of a karaoke parlor in southern Binh Duong, where a fire later killed 32 people.

Pham Thi Hong, former officer at the firefighting police department of Binh Duong, on Wednesday was put under an investigation by the provincial police for fire safety violations.

Nguyen Thanh Luan, director of Thai Binh Anh company, was also put under an investigation for the same charge.

It comes three months after Binh Duong People’s Court demanded further investigations into the deadly fire at An Phu karaoke parlor in Thuan An City in September 2022.

Authorities said Hong was responsible for the construction and completion of An Phu’s fire safety systems. As she did not have the qualifications to complete the documents for the project, Hong hired 43-year-old Nguyen Nhat Linh to construct the project instead.

Hong then allegedly used her relationships to ask Pham Quoc Hung, another former officer of the Binh Duong firefighting police department, to evaluate the parlor’s fire safety system. To legitimize the evaluation, Hung falsified documents.

Hong then brought the falsified documents to Luan, whose company was qualified to design and construction firefighting facilities, to sign. Despite his company not constructing the project, and although Luan never visited the parlor itself to evaluate it, he "respected Hong" and signed the documents.

On Sept. 6, 2022, flames quickly spread through the karaoke parlor at night. There were 60 employees and customers inside at the time. 32 bodies were found in the aftermath, while the rest managed to escape.

The parlor’s owner, Le Anh Quan, as well as former firefighting police officers Vu Truong Son and Pham Quoc Hung, were already put under investigation for fire safety violations.

Nguyen Van Vo, another former firefighting police officer, was charged with negligence.

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