Viet Nam News
BÌNH PHƯỚC — The HCM City People’s Court has rejected the appeals by two of the gang killers of a massacre that shocked the country last year.
The court has justified an instance court’s verdict of life terms to death for the two of three accused who killed six members of a family in southern Bình Phước Province.
According to the court verdict on Monday, Vũ Văn Tiến, 24, faces the death sentence for being an accomplice to his friend, Nguyễn Hải Dương, 24, the main culprit and mastermind of the massacre. Dương had been sentenced to dealth and had no appeal for the verdict.
Trần Đình Thoại, 27, Dương’s friend, would serve 16 years in jail for supporting Dương by purchasing a knife for him to carry out the massacre and not reporting the conspiracy.
The HCM City court also rejected the appeals by the victims’ family for a trial for Dương’s aunt, Trần Thị Trinh, and their demand for an increase in the sentence for Thoại.
The family alleged that the woman offered Dương a motorcycle to drive to the home of the victims to carry out the massacre.
An instance court in Bình Phước Province last December handed down death sentences to two of the men, Dương, and Tiến. Accomplice, Thọai, was sentenced to 16 years for buying the knife for Dương and for not reporting the conspiracy.
The court also said the three men must pay a total compensation of VNĐ480 million to the victims’ family.
Early on Monday, lawyer Lê Văn Nam from Bình Phước Lawyers Group, who defended Tiến, said the death sentence against Tiến was too harsh.
Nam referred to three of the five key points that were in favour of the defendant. First, the instance court did not really consider the levels of influence between the criminals, which followed the hierarchy of the main accused and his accomplices.
Nam said Tiến was forced by Dương to take part in the crime, making him only an accomplice.
Secondly, Dương had confessed to threatening Tiến and forcing him to go with him to the crime scene.
Thirdly, Nam opposed the view of the court that Tiến was like the other killers, who possessed a rough, inhuman character – a key factor that had attracted the death sentence. In this case, Tiến was actually just an accomplice of the killer but did not directly kill anyone.
Many people flocked to the court to follow the trial and hear the review of the case in which six members of a family were killed last year. — VNS