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Vietnam to charge brother of ex-Vinalines boss with abuse of power

Police from the Ministry of Public Security announced Tuesday that a former police official being detained for allegedly helping his infamous brother flee the country could be charged with "abuse of power".


Duong Tu Trong, 52, former deputy director of Hai Phong City Police Department, was arrested four months ago for "illegally sending a fugitive abroad." Trong's brother, Duong Chi Dung, the former head of state-owned Vietnam National Shipping Lines (Vinalines), was implicated in a multimillion dollar corruption scandal last year.


According to police, Trong will face an "abuse of power" charge for ordering his subordinates to issue two ID cards with false names.


Last year, Trong allegedly connived with others including his subordinates to abet the escape of his brother Dung, ex-chairman of Vinalines and former head of the Transport Ministry's Vietnam Maritime Administration.


Dung, 56, fled Vietnam prior to the arrival of investigators at his house to arrest him on May 18, 2012. He was apprehended by Interpol in an unnamed Southeast Asian country on September 4 and extradited back to Vietnam.


He has been charged with "deliberately violating state economic regulations causing serious consequences" while at the helm of Vinalines from 2005-2012.


Police have arrested six former police officers in Hai Phong for allegedly having abetted Dung's escape. Another customs officier is wanted for the same offence.


Several Vinalines officials have also been arrested for allegedly mismanaging the company's resources in buying a floating dock for US$5 million and more than 70 ships in poor condition from abroad.


In May last year the government released a report saying Vinalines had defaulted on loans worth a total of $1.1 billion.