HCM CITY — A former lawyer has been sentenced to eight years in jail for planning an attack on a meeting of world leaders in Việt Nam.
Trần Công Khải . — VNA/VNS Photo
The People’s Court of HCM City yesterday jailed Trần Công Khải for attempting to sabotage the 2017 APEC summit in Đà Nẵng and trying to overthrow the people’s administration.
Khải, born in 1963 and residing in District 3 of the city, was found guilty of the latter offence under Article 109 of the 2015 Penal Code.
Khải tried to sabotage the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings, which were attended by US President Donald Trump, Russia's Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping of China, but he was foiled, according to the court’s verdict.
At the trial, the court ruled that Khải’s activities were “particularly malicious and deleterious” for society, and constituted a harm to the existence and stability of the people’s administration and the country.
The court said despise his knowledge of the law due to his background as a lawyer and notary, Khải joined the so-called “Chính phủ quốc gia Việt Nam lâm thời” (Provisional National Government of Việt Nam) despite being fully aware of the nature of this terrorist organisation.
At the trial, Khải pleaded guilty and said since his daughter was suffering from heart issues at birth he hoped the organisation would provide support for her after he joined.
“Chính phủ quốc gia Việt Nam lâm thời” is listed as a terrorist organisation by the Ministry of Public Security. The ministry has frequently pointed out the terrorist tactics of this organisation but many dissidents who are exposed to toxic and misleading information on the internet have been recruited into the organisation.
In this case, via social media, a US national named Kelly Triệu (also known as Triệu Thanh Hoa, born in 1968, a core member of “Chính phủ quốc gia Việt Nam lâm thời”) induced Khải to join.
Khải was assigned to recruit other people to hold a referendum to elect Đào Minh Quân as President of Việt Nam.
Khải recruited with Nguyễn Đoàn Quang Viên, Lê Ngọc Hiển and Trần Thị Ngân Giang and together they discussed and made a list of participants in the referendum to send to this organisation.
Viên, Hiển and Giang were not prosecuted criminally as the court deemed they had limited legal awareness, making them easy targets for recruitment by those with ill will, and their wrongdoings were not serious and they expressed earnest repentance.
The three were handed over to local authorities for management and education. — VNS