Defendants at court
After each shipment of containers of goods into Vietnam and delivery to the warehouse, Vo Van Dong would meet Hoang Duy Tien either at the headquarters of the Investigation Police Department on Economic, Corruption-related Crimes and Smuggling (PC03, Ho Chi Minh City Police) or at a coffee shop. He would then provide Tien with the agreed-upon amount of money for the expenses associated with importing goods.
On May 25, the People's Court of HCMC commenced the first-instance trial of 26 defendants involved in a case of smuggling 1,287 containers of used equipment and machinery from abroad to Vietnam, with a total value exceeding VND217 billion.
This case involves Hoang Duy Tien, 38, a former police officer who worked in the Anti-Smuggling Team (Team 7) of the PC03 Department, HCMC Police, along with his accomplices.
According to the indictment, between September 2019 and May 24, 2021, Hoang Duy Tien and his accomplices engaged in the extensive smuggling of used machinery and equipment from foreign countries to Vietnam. Tien collaborated with owners of goods to illegally import second-hand machinery and equipment from Japan and China into Vietnam for trading and generating illegal profits.
To carry out their actions, Hoang Duy Tien and his associates established 47 companies and directly utilized the legal entities of 45 companies to facilitate the process of opening 1,153 customs declaration forms. Through this scheme, they managed to smuggle 1,287 containers into Vietnam. They manipulated and falsified all the foreign trade contracts, invoices, and related documents associated with the shipments, ensuring that they met the required criteria as stipulated by regulations.
Hoang Duy Tien (wearing blue facemask) and his accomplices at court
Subsequently, to complete the customs clearance procedures, Hoang Duy Tien established connections with Dai Minh Viet Company to fabricate on-site inspection reports and issue fraudulent certificates. These falsified documents were then submitted to the customs authorities to meet the requirements for customs clearance, as mandated by regulations.
Despite not having an agreement with Hoang Duy Tien regarding the importation of used machinery and equipment for commercial purposes, the defendants, who held positions such as directors, deputy directors, appraisal department heads, and appraisers within Dai Minh Viet Company, willfully ignored legal regulations. They falsified inspection reports, issued fraudulent appraisal certificates, and disregarded the potential consequences. Their actions were aimed at facilitating the customs clearance process for the smuggled goods, as directed by Hoang Duy Tien and his associates.
In February 2021, defendant Vo Van Dong, 56, a former officer of the PC03, HCMC Police, approached Hoang Duy Tien with information that his friend needed to import used machinery from overseas to Vietnam. Vo Van Dong proposed discussing the matter with Tien to come to an agreement. Subsequently, Hoang Duy Tien agreed to handle the import of the container shipments from abroad to Vietnam on behalf of Dong. He set a fee of VND90 million per container, including the transportation costs.
Hoang Duy Tien personally received information about the container shipments of used machinery and equipment from Vo Van Dong. Afterward, Hoang Duy Tien directed his staff to handle the preparation of documentation and import procedures for those container shipments.
After each shipment of containers of goods into Vietnam and delivery to the warehouse, Vo Van Dong would meet Hoang Duy Tien either at the headquarters of the PC03, HCMC Police, or at a coffee shop. He would then provide Tien with the agreed-upon amount of money for the expenses associated with importing goods.