Vietnamese ‘underground’ banker arrested in Japan

By Phan Anh   January 14, 2019 | 04:26 am PT
Vietnamese ‘underground’ banker arrested in Japan
A Vietnamese man was arrested last Sunday in central Japan for allegedly running an underground bank. Photo by Shutterstock/melhijad
A Vietnamese man is alleged to have charged hefty commissions for transferring money from Japan to Vietnam via his bank account.

The Japan Today newspaper reported Monday that Chu Anh Tuan, 36, has been arrested in central Japan.

Tuan was arrested Sunday on suspicion of violating Japanese bank law for transferring approximately $9,000 from Vietnamese nationals in Japan to Vietnam through his personal bank account between June 2015 to September 2016, according to police in Aichi prefecture.

However, they believe that he has actually remitted approximately $21 million from Japan to Vietnam since April 2013, charging commissions of 800 yen ($7.4) for remittances of 30,000 yen ($277) and 1,000 yen for 100,000 yen ($924).

Tuan has denied all allegations.

This case adds to the unsavory reputation that Vietnamese expats have acquired because of the actions of a few.

Vietnamese expats in Japan committed more crimes than any other foreign non-permanent residents living in the country in 2017, Kyodo News has reported.

Police recorded 5,140 crimes committed by Vietnamese people in 2017, up from 3,177 the year before or a 62 per cent rise, accounting for 30.2 percent of the total number of crimes committed by foreign nationals.

Shoplifting was the dominant crime, with 2,037 cases, while burglary jumped to 325 in 2017 from just 12 the previous year.

Vietnamese have surpassed Brazilians to become the fourth biggest minority group in Japan after the number of non-permanent residents in the country grew more than six-fold between 2008 and 2017, when it reached about 260,000 in 2017.

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