Germany Reportedly Opens Abduction Case Against Vietnamese Intel. Official

© AFP 2022 / CHRISTOF STACHEVisitors walk in the glass cupola of the Reichstag building that hosts the German parliament (Bundestag) and look at a German flag in Berlin, Germany, on June 10, 2016.
Visitors walk in the glass cupola of the Reichstag building that hosts the German parliament (Bundestag) and look at a German flag in Berlin, Germany, on June 10, 2016. - Sputnik International
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The German Federal Public Prosecution Office has brought a criminal case against the deputy director of the Vietnamese General Department of Military Intelligence, Duong Minh Hung, over the abduction of a Vietnamese businessman in Berlin, local media reported.

Former head of Vietnamese oil company PetroVietnam Xuan Thanh Trinh — who has been accused by Hanoi of embezzling millions of US dollars — and his companion were kidnapped in Berlin’s Tiergarten Park in July. The German Federal Public Prosecution Office, which is leading the investigation, has already brought charges against 47-year-old Vietnamese national Long N. H., who is supposed to have been working for the intelligence services and providing logistics of the operation.

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According to the Suddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, Duong Minh Hung coordinated the abduction. The official reportedly arrived in Berlin days before the incident. On the day of the abduction, he contacted people implicated in the crime over the phone over a hundred times. Two days before the kidnapping, he moved to another hotel, the newspaper reported on Tuesday.

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The incident has had a negative impact on the two countries' relations and was followed by the expulsion of several Vietnamese diplomats and an intelligence officer from Germany.

In late September, the German Foreign Ministry announced the suspension of strategic cooperation between Berlin and Hanoi over the incident. It also listed its demands to the Vietnamese government, of which included an apology and prosecution of those responsible, as well as presence of international observers at the legal proceedings of Trinh's case.

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