Guo Jin Hua, 65, of Guangxi province in southern China, was convicted of transporting and circulating fake Vietnamese dong worth US$285,000 at the end of a ten-day trial Tuesday (30 Sept) in Tien Giang province, judge Tran Ngoc Quang said.

Along with Guo, a Vietnamese accomplice was sentenced to life in prison and 35 others were given jail terms from two years to 23 years on the same charges, he said.

Guo told the court that the counterfeit money was made in Taiwan and transported to Vietnam via China.

The ring was uncovered in June last year after operating for nearly two years.

Few foreigners have been sentenced to death in Vietnam, where about 100 people each year get the death penalty, many for drug-related offenses.

The Associated Press - October 1st, 2008