Six men have been sentenced to death for kidnapping, gang-raping, and murdering a 22-year-old girl in the northern Vietnamese province of Dien Bien, a case that shocked the nation earlier this year.
Their public trial began on Thursday morning at a stadium in Dien Bien City, the capital of the namesake province, and concluded on Sunday morning, with the court announcing the punishment for a total of nine defendants involved in the case.
Among them, Vi Van Toan, 38, who was the mastermind of the crime, was sentenced to death for murder and 13 years for kidnapping and appropriation of property.
Bui Van Cong, 44, was sentenced to death for murder, 14 years for raping, 13 years for kidnapping and appropriation of property, and 24 months for storing drugs.
|Vi Van Toan at the trial in Dien Bien Province on December 29, 2019. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre|
Vuong Van Hung, 35, was given the death penalty for murder, 10 years behind bars for raping, and 12 years for kidnap and appropriation of property.
Pham Van Nhiem, 47, and Luong Van La, 26, were sentenced to death for murder, 12 years for raping, and 11 years for kidnap and appropriation of property.
Luong Van Hung, 39, was condemned to capital punishment for murder, 13 years for raping, and 12 years for kidnap and appropriation of property.
Pham Van Dung, 47, and Cam Van Chuong, 45, received a 10-year and nine-year jail term, respectively, for raping.
Bui Thi Kim Thu, Cong’s 44-year-old wife, was sent to prison for three years for failing to report the crimes.
|Bui Van Cong at the trial in Dien Bien Province on December 29, 2019. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre|
According to the indictment, Tran Thi Hien had a drug deal with Toan and Cong in 2009, after which Hien owed Toan VND300 million (US$12,980) and Cong VND30 million ($1,298).
In order to pressure Hien to pay the debt, Toan, Cong, and their accessories decided to kidnap Hien’s daughter, 22-year-old C.M.D., who was a college student, in early February.
While holding her hostage, all of the kidnappers, except for Toan, gang-raped the girl for five times before killing her to cover up their crime.
In a separate trial that took place in late November, Hien and Cong were handed 20-year jail terms while Toan were condemned to life in prison for illegally storing, transporting, and trading narcotics.
|The final day of the trial in Dien Bien Province on December 29, 2019. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre|