|Trịnh Bá Phương at court. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — The High-level People's Court in Hà Nội has upheld sentences handed down at a first instance trial to two defendants for “making, storing, or circulating information and documents with content against the Socialist Republic of Việt Nam”.
At the first-instance trial held in December last year by the Hà Nội People’s Court, Trịnh Bá Phương, 37, and Nguyễn Thị Tâm, 50, were jailed for 10 and six years, respectively.
According to the indictment, in January 2020, military units and local authorities built a wall to protect Miếu Mon military airport in Đồng Tâm Commune, Mỹ Đức District, Hà Nội.
Police officers were stationed at the site to ensure order and security in the commune, but were later attacked by an armed group of local residents who opposed the construction of the wall around the military airfield.
The clash resulted in the death of three policemen, while officers also shot a man holding a grenade. The man later died.
Throughout the conflict, Phương and Tâm live-streamed and posted videos, articles, and statuses on Facebook accounts "Trịnh Bá Phương," "Nguyễn Thị Tâm" and "Tâm Dương Nội" that the court found to have distorted the situation in Đồng Tâm.
The posts defamed the people's government, incited people to oppose the State, and slandered and discredited authorised agencies and forces, causing confusion among the people with the aim to oppose the Socialist Republic of Việt Nam.
In addition, police found that Phương was in possession of a 278-page book that contained fabricated information aimed at defaming the people's administration; distorting, slandering and offending the reputation of organisations, and the honour and dignity of individuals.
At the appeal trial on Wednesday, in addition to the prison sentence, Phương and Tâm were also given probation for five years and three years, respectively, from the date of their release. — VNS