efe-epaHo Chi Minh City, Vietnam

A court in Vietnam on Thursday sentenced the former head of state-owned PetroVietnam and a former member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam to 18 years in jail on charges of corruption.

The Hanoi People's Court found Dinh La Thang, who headed PetroVietnam between 2008-2011, guilty of deliberately not following the law by investing state funds into OceanBank.

The state-run Vietnam News Agency reported that he was accused of investing 800 billion dong ($32.5 million) of state funds into Ocean Bank against government requirements.

Dinh, who allegedly did not consult the company's board about the contract with OceanBank and failed to inform the government of the transaction, would also have to pay a fine of 600 billion dong to the state as compensation.

Thursday's punishment comes after the former executive was already sentenced to a 13-year jail term in January for diversion and embezzlement of funds and delaying the construction of the Thai Binh 2 thermal power plant.

Vietnam, which established PetroVietnam in 1977 to manage its energy resources, is ranked 113th out of 176 countries in Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index.