On February 3, Quang Nam Provincial Police announced that the Investigation Agency had launched an investigation into 47 individuals related to the crime of “usury in civil transactions.”

These 47 suspects are part of Phase 2 of the large-scale usury crime case involving more than 20 trillion VND (approximately 869 million USD) that was uncovered by the Quang Nam Provincial Police in collaboration with other police forces and local authorities in the middle of 2023.

Previously, in July 2023, the Quang Nam Provincial Police, in collaboration with the Criminal Investigation Departments of the Ministry of Public Security and local police forces, successfully investigated and dismantled the largest online usury network ever discovered in Vietnam.

As a result, the Investigation Agency has brought charges against 54 foreign individuals and Vietnamese nationals for the crimes of “Usury in civil transactions,” “Misappropriation of assets,” “Illegal transportation of goods and currency across borders,” and “Money laundering.”

This criminal network provided loans to over 1 million people across the country through a mobile app, charging an interest rate of over 2,300% per year. The total amount of loans reached over 20 trillion VND (approximately 869 million USD), resulting in illicit profits of over 8 trillion VND (approximately 347 million USD). The network also engaged in money laundering and illegally transferred over 5 trillion VND (approximately 217 million USD) out of Vietnam.

To conceal their usury activities and launder their ill-gotten gains, the suspects set up dozens of “shell” companies and used thousands of bank accounts to facilitate the flow of money, with the purpose of laundering money and illegally transferring funds across borders.

In addition, the suspects employed debt collection tactics reminiscent of organized crime, resorting to image manipulation to intimidate borrowers into repaying their debts…