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Compliance Map – Vietnam

Currency of information: 20 February 2015

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Penal Code (amended 2009) (“Penal Code“)

New Penal Code, effective from 1 July 2016 onwards (“New Penal Code“).

Investigating agencies:

  • Investigating agencies of the People’s Police;
  • Investigating agencies of the People’s Army; and
  • Investigating agencies of the Supreme People’s Procuracy;

Prosecuting agencies include: The People’s Procuracy at local and central levels

Investigating agencies:

  • Investigating agencies of the People’s Police;
  • Investigating agencies of the People’s Army; and
  • Investigating agencies of the Supreme People’s Procuracy;

Prosecuting agencies include: The People’s Procuracy at local and central levels

Offenses

Penal Code (amended 2009)

New Penal Code, effective from 1 July 2016 onwards (“New Penal Code“).

Receiving bribes

Under Article 279 of the Penal Code, those who abuse their positions and/or powers, and have accepted or will accept directly or through intermediaries money, property or other material interests in any form worth VND2 million (approximately USD95) or more in order to perform or not to perform certain jobs for the benefit, or at the request of the bribe givers, shall be subject to criminal liability for the crime of “receiving a bribe.” They may also be considered to have received a bribe even if the value in question is less than VND2 million if other conditions are met, including: (i) serious consequences are caused; or (ii) the offender has been previously disciplined for similar acts.

Under Article 354 of the New Penal Code, those who abuse their positions and/or powers, and have accepted or will accept directly or through intermediaries any of following interests for themselves or other organizations in order to perform or not to perform certain jobs for the benefit, or at the request of the bribe givers, shall be subject to criminal liability for the crime of “receiving a bribe”:

  • Money, property or other material interests worth VND2 million (approximately USD95) or more, or even less than VND2 million, but wherein other conditions are met
  • Any non-material interest

Giving bribes

Under Article 289 of the Penal Code, those who give bribes valued from VND2 million or less than VND2 million but doing so: (i) causes serious consequences; or (ii) the offense is committed more than once, shall be subject to criminal liability for the crime of “giving a bribe.”

Under Article 364 of the New Penal Code, those who, directly or through intermediaries, have given or will give money, property or other material interests worth VND2 million or more, or any nonmaterial interest in order to induce the bribe receiver to do or not do some official task for the benefit, or at the request of the bribe giver are criminally liable for “giving a bribe.”

Private bribery and bribery of foreign public officials are currently not regulated under the Penal Code. From 1 July 2016 onwards, the definition of bribery under the provisions of the New Penal Code will also apply to private bribery and bribery to foreign public officials and officials of public international organizations.

Penalties- Criminal and/or Civil liability

Penal Code (amended 2009)

New Penal Code, effective from 1 July 2016 onwards (“New Penal Code“).

The Penal Code only provides for individual, not corporate, criminal liability. Therefore, only natural persons who have committed an offense or are found responsible may be held culpable for crimes involving a company.

An official who commits a corrupt act, depending on the nature and seriousness of the breach, shall be subject to disciplinary action, or prosecution for criminal liability, in accordance with the Penal Code. In cases where he or she is sentenced for a corrupt act and the decision is legally enforceable, he or she will be dismissed. Those who receive bribes may be subject to criminal liability, up to and including the death penalty. Any properties, funds or other valuables used for corruption or bribery may be expropriated, in accordance with the applicable laws.

Those who give bribes under the Penal Code will be subject to criminal liability, including fines and/or prison terms ranging from one year to 20 years, or even life imprisonment. In addition to the above, the offender may be subject to monetary fine of up to five times the value of the bribe. Exemption of criminal liability may be applied in certain circumstances.

Under the New Penal Code, a commercial legal entity is subject to criminal liability for committing certain crimes, which does not include corruption-related crimes, such as receiving bribes, giving bribes and acting as intermediaries for bribery. Individuals who receive bribes may be subject to criminal liability, up to and including the death penalty, and those who give bribes may be subject to criminal liability, including fines and/or prison terms ranging from six months to 20 years.

Contacts at Baker McKenzie
Frederick Burke Partner, Ho Chi Minh City Email: [email protected] T + 84 8 3520 2628
Chi Anh TranĀ  Associate, Ho Chi Minh City T +84 8 3520 2628 Email: [email protected]
Manh Hung Tran Partner, Hanoi T + 84 4 3936 9398 Email: [email protected]
Yee Chung Seck Partner, Ho Chi Minh City T + 84 8 3829 5585 Email: [email protected]