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Vietnam court sentences ex-cop to 3 years in prison for disclosing state secrets

Wednesday, November 18, 2015, 13:49 GMT+7
Vietnam court sentences ex-cop to 3 years in prison for disclosing state secrets
A Facebook page is displayed on a computer screen in this photo illustration.

A Vietnam court has given a three-year sentence to an ex-police officer in Ho Chi Minh City who uploaded a top state secret onto his Facebook page and sent it to an exile reactionary organization, also via the social networking site. 

Pham Thanh Trung, 26, a former officer at the Binh Thanh District Police Bureau, received the jail term on charges of “deliberately disclosing State secrets” at his trial opened by the municipal People’s Court on Tuesday.

According to the indictment, in April 2015, Trung’s boss assigned him to make a copy of Notice No. 5 about a plan to ensure order and security for activities celebrating the 40th anniversary of the liberation of southern Vietnam and National Reunification on April 30.

Trung later kept one copy of the document, classified as a top state secret, for himself.     

On the night of April 25, 2015, Trung used his cellphone to photograph the notice and then posted it on his Facebook page.

He also sent the image of the notice to the Facebook page of Viet Tan Party, an outlawed reactionary organization based in the U.S.

A day later, Binh Thanh police discovered the notice on Trung’s Facebook page, launched an investigation and discovered a piece of writing on his computer giving instructions on how to scatter leaflets and lay explosives at governmental offices, according to news website VnExpress.

At the hearing, Trung admitted to his offenses as stated in the indictment.

He said he committed the acts spontaneously and momentarily after disagreeing with his superior on issues related to bonuses and other benefits, and after facing some family problems.

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