Vietnam fines Chinese tourist $1,700 for distributing maps

HANOI - The Da Nang City Customs Department has fined a Chinese tourist VND30 million (US$1,700) for bringing and distributing maps to the city that violate the country's sovereignty.

The city customs checked the luggage of Li Ye, 31, last Wednesday when she was entering the city via a flight from China's Guangzhou, and detected nearly 260 tourism maps of Da Nang City, which did not include Viet Nam's Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelagos.

Li Ye declared that she was a tour guide and the maps would be delivered to tourists visiting Da Nang.

Li Ye was asked to return to her country after paying enough of the fine. The maps will be destroyed as regulated by authorities.

The department warned that if Li Ye repeated her violations in the future, she would be fined much more.

So far this year the Da Nang Customs Department has discovered four Chinese people bringing maps and tourist books without the two archipelagos into the country via airways.