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Why is Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co. Ltd. prosecuted?

16:52 | 01/08/2019

VCN - On 24 July,  the Department of Anti-Smuggling Investigation - General Department of Customs issued Decision to initiate investigation of criminal cases of "smuggling" related to Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd. and transferring case files and evidence to the Investigation Police Department – Binh Phuoc Provincial Police for investigation.

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A container of transit goods filled with electronic goods. Photo: T.H.

Thousands of second hand electronic machines were smuggled

On July 27, 2017, Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd. (Nguyen Hue Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City) opened an independent shipping declaration at the Cai Mep Port Border Gate Customs Department - Customs Department Ba Ria-Vung Tau to transit two containers of used and 100 percent new consumer electronic goods to a business in Cambodia. Goods in two containers, including: more than 500 air conditioners, 259 electric rice cookers, 83 air cleaners, nine refrigerators, 87 fans, 37 air conditioner windows, all used and 30 100 percent new refrigerator and conditioner. Cai Mep port border gate customs sub-department inspects goods to determine goods as customs declaration should hand over to Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd to transport to Hoa Lu- Binh Phuoc international border gate to re-export according to regulations.

On July 30, 2017, after receiving transit goods to carry out re-export procedures, Hoa Lu International Border Gate Customs Branch – Binh Phuoc Customs Department worked with Hoa Lu border gate Border Guard Station and Customs Control Team to inspect goods to discover both containers are empty and contain no goods. Thus, all goods (including used electronic goods - on the list of banned goods) have been smuggled inland without transit in accordance with regulations.

The complicated case was also investigated by Binh Phuoc Customs Department in cooperation with the Police Department and the Anti-Smuggling Control Team of the South (Department of Anti-Smuggling Investigation). Verifying the journey of two tractors, the police agency summoned the drivers of these two tractors, Nguyen Thanh Tung and Nguyen Thanh Hai. Both drivers said Tran Anh Tam, Director of Nam Minh Import-Export Trading Service Co., Ltd, mobilised to control the tractor to Cai Mep port to transport two containers of goods. Tam gave the phone number of a person to the two contact drivers to receive the goods at the port. After receiving the goods, this person guided the drivers along National Highway 5 and turned into Vo Nguyen Giap Street then went around to an alley and asked to stop. Later, this person gave the two drivers VND 500,000 each and asked them not to get off the bus. A few hours later this man asked the two drivers to drive the trailers to Hoa Lu border gate. It was discovered the car was lighter at the beginning, however, the inspection still showed that it was still sealed, so they continued to drive the car to Hoa Lu border gate upon request.

After taking two cargo containers to the border gate, driver Nguyen Thanh Tung called Nguyen Van Hoa, a delivery officer of Vinh Thinh Import-Export Co., Ltd. to carry out re-export procedures. When carrying out the procedures because the container contains used goods, Hoa Lu International Border Gate Customs Department asked Hoa to present the transit permit of the Ministry of Industry and Trade as prescribed. Draw the phone for Tran Anh Tam but cannot provide it. Hoa Lu International Border Gate Customs Sub-Department opened the actual inspection of the two containers discovering no goods. Declaring with the police, Nguyen Van Hoa said, because of being a delivery officer, he had to open a rent declaration for many businesses. On July 30, 2017, Tran Anh Tam called Hoa for carrying out the procedures for the above two containers at Hoa Lu border gate. When being allowed to drive, Tung submitted the file of two containers, Hoa contacted Hoa Lu International Border Gate Customs Department to complete the procedures and was found by the agency without goods as mentioned above.

Tran Anh Tam, Director of Nam Minh Import Export Trading Service Co., admitted he was the one who received the verbal contract from a man named Nam - they knew each other several times at the port - transported two containers of goods from Cai Mep port to Hoa Lu – Binh Phuoc border gate. After that, Tam ordered two tractors driven by Tung and Hai to perform the contract. However, when two cargo vehicles were temporarily seized by Hoa Lu International Border Gate Customs, Tam contacted Nam to ask questions but could not reach him.

Renting director and "ghost"enterprise

Expanding investigation to verify the withdrawal of goods, the police summoned Vu Thanh Giang, Director of Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd. Giang admitted, in November 2016, after his sentence was terminated, Giang returned to work as a motorbike taxi driver in District 10 of Ho Chi Minh City. Giang was given 2 millionVND by a man name Phong and asked Giang to give his papers to carry out the procedure to be named as Director of Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Company Limited. Despite being named director, Giang did not know who Phong was, and did not know where the head of Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd was located, and what it did.

Verifying Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd at the business registration address at 9th, 68th Street, Nguyen Hue Street, Ho Chi Minh City, said the building manager, Commercial Investment Services Co., Ltd. Minh Tri Viet has a rental contract, but since signing the office lease contract, this company does not see any business or organisation at the leased address.

At the Department of Planning and Investment of Ho Chi Minh City, the Customs Department discovered Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd with the old name Big Cares Real Estate Management Co., Ltd. registered for the first time in 2007 and change the third registration in 2017 by Duong Van Chien as the legal representative. Working with Customs, Duong Van Chien said he was completely ignorant of being the legal representative for Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Co., Ltd. However, Chien said in the past, he had lost his identity card, so he could have had his identity card taken to establish a business.

Not only that, after receiving information from the Binh Phuoc Customs Department, the Southern Regional Anti-Smuggling Control Team - the Anti-Smuggling Investigation Department expanded the investigation to King Logistic Co., Ltd. - lover request for adjustment of manifest for consignee is Minh Tri Viet Trading Investment Services Company Limited. Through verification at the business registration address of King Logis Limited Company at 1020 Truong Sa, Ward 12, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, the Customs Department discovered this place is only a barbershop. At the Department of Planning and Investment of Ho Chi Minh City, King Logisitc Co., Ltd. was established in 2015 by Le Thi Ngoc Huyen, born in 1989, who is a director of this enterprise. Two years later, the company changed its legal representative, Nguyen Hung Dung, born in 1972, residing in Ho Chi Minh City. Verifying information at District Tax Office 3, Ho Chi Minh City Department of Taxation, this company has not yet submitted tax finalisation reports, but the tax authorities contacted many times, this enterprise no longer operates at the address business sign.

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Thus, the survey results initially show that enterprises involved in the above two container goods transit procedures are "ghost" enterprises and the director is not real.

By Le Thu/ HuuTuc