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Vietnam police arrest ex-BIDV chairman amid graft crackdown

Stock MarketsNov 29, 2018 05:40AM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO - A man passes by a branch of Vietnam's Investment and Development Bank in Hanoi

HANOI (Reuters) - The former chairman of Vietnam's second largest listed bank has been arrested for alleged violations of banking regulations, the Southeast Asian country's public security ministry said on Thursday.

Tran Bac Ha, former head of the state-owned Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (HM:BID), or BIDV, was accused of "violating regulations on banking operations", the Ministry of Public Security said on its website.

Police have arrested two other former senior executives at the bank and placed another under house arrest for alleged involvement in the case, the ministry said without elaborating.

BIDV did not immediately respond to a request from Reuters for comment. Ha was not reachable by phone.

The arrests come amid a widening crackdown on corruption in Vietnam, which has seen the Communist-ruled government launch investigations into hundreds of public officials, and several executives at state-owned enterprises jailed.

BIDV, 95.28 percent owned by the central bank is Vietnam's second-largest listed bank by market value after Vietcombank (HM:VCB).

Last month, BIDV said it wanted to issue new shares to KEB Hana Bank, a unit of Hana Financial (KS:086790), which would give the South Korean bank a 15 percent stake.

In June, the Communist Party of Vietnam said Ha and two other executives at the bank had committed violations in lending 4.7 trillion dong ($201 million) to 12 companies involved in a corruption case at Vietnam Construction Bank.

Vietnam has opened 427 corruption cases this year to investigate 889 officials, its chief government inspector said this month.

Vietnam police arrest ex-BIDV chairman amid graft crackdown
 

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