Electric meter scam trial begins in HCMC

The trial of 17 people accused in the fake electric meter scandal nearly four years ago opened at the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Court on May 18.

Le Minh Hoang, former director of the HCM City Power Company, at the city People’s Court at the fake electric-meter hearing on May 18.

Of them, 12 are former officials of the public utility HCM City Power Company who are charged with “intentionally acting against State regulations on economic management, causing serious consequences”.

The five others – former officials and employees of Linkton Vina Company – are accused of “producing and trading counterfeit goods.”

Among them are chairman Wong Justin Kaleung, vice chairwoman Tran Thi Lien, and deputy general director Wong Kaho. 

According to the HCM City People’s Procuracy’s indictment, Le Minh Hoang, former director of the utility, his deputy Le Van Hoanh, and other employees breached state regulations on bidding and contracts, causing big losses.

Despite the fact that Linkton Vina failed to meet bidding requirements, Hoang signed off on documents recognizing the company as the winner of a bid to supply 312,000 electric meters.

As a result, the HCM City Power Company paid VND181 billion ($12 million) to Linkton Vina for poor-quality meters.

Linkton Vina imported their parts and assembled the meters in Vietnam but labeled them “Linkton Singapore” before selling them to the company.
 
The hearing is scheduled to last until 29.

By A. Chan – Translated by Quang Thinh

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