Hanoi prison break: 2 death-row inmates at large 

Have you seen these men?

Mugshots of Le Van Tho (R) and Nguyen Van Tinh. Photo: Hanoi Police

Two prisoners are on the run after escaping death row at a detention center in Hanoi on Sunday, a source from the Ministry of Public Security told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Wednesday.

The T16 detention center, located in Hanoi’s rural Thanh Oai District, is under the ministry’s management.

The inmates, Le Van Tho and Nguyen Van Tinh, were being held in solitary confinement at the facility while awaiting execution.

According to a corrections officer at the T16 detention center, the inmates were reported missing on Sunday evening.

The Ministry of Public Security has been briefed on the incident and plans are being executed to search for the dangerous criminals, he added.

Tho, 37, received the death penalty in May when the People’s Court of Ha Nam Province in northern Vietnam found him guilty of dealing in narcotics, murder, and property appropriation. 

His previous convictions included murder, kidnapping for ransom, illegal use of military firearms, bribery, robbery, and property appropriation.

While imprisoned, Tho was found to be instructing his cohorts on the outside to carry out murders, fraud, and drug deals, according to court documents.

Meanwhile, Tinh, 28, was sentenced to death by the People’s Court of Hanoi in April for his involvement in a narcotics ring.

Tinh’s previous offense was harboring or consuming property acquired through the commission of crime by others.

A representative from the detention center refused to elaborate on the method of escape, but underscored that “officers are working on options to have them arrested."

Hanoi police have also issued a notice on the search for these criminals.

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