Vietnam arrests former senior police official for organizing gambling

By Staff reporters   March 11, 2018 | 11:18 pm GMT+7

He is allegedly linked to a recently busted transnational, multi-million dollar gambling ring that has about 8 million players.

Police from the northern province of Phu Tho have arrested and launched a criminal probe into a high-ranking police official for organizing gambling.

Major General Nguyen Thanh Hoa, 60, former head of the Ministry of Public Security's high-technology department (C50), was arrested on Sunday evening at a Hanoi hospital, where he had been receiving medical treatment for over two months. Police were also seen searching his house in Hanoi following the arrest.

President Tran Dai Quang also signed a decision to strip Hoa of his "People's police" title on the same day.

Maj. Gen. Nguyen Thanh Hoa, former head of the Ministry of Public Securitys high-technology department. Photo by Cong an nhan dan.

Maj. Gen. Nguyen Thanh Hoa, former head of the Ministry of Public Security's high-technology department. Photo by Cong an nhan dan.

Hoa's arrest warrant was issued hours after the Communist Party's Secretariat on Sunday morning ordered a further investigation into a case of "using the internet to appropriate property, organize gambling, gamble, illegally trade receipts and launder money" in Phu Tho Province.

“This is a particularly large scale case that uses high technology; the case itself is especially serious, complex and sensitive, involving many people, many sectors and provinces, involving officials within the police,” the Secretariat stated.

Hoa was already suspended from his position in late 2017 due to suspicions that he had been involved in the gambling ring.

Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh last January announced Phu Tho police had successfully busted the transnational ring, seizing over VND1 trillion ($44 million) while about $3.6 million in foreign currencies had been sent overseas through gambling activities.

Authorities estimated that the ring currently has about 8 million players, with an average of three accounts per player. Dozens of suspects involved in the ring are being investigated, including a number of officers at C50.

 
 
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