ĐIỆN BIÊN — Four men will be prosecuted for the rape and murder of a university student in the northern mountainous province of Điện Biên, provincial police announced at a press briefing yesterday.
The men are accused of capturing the 22-year-old woman before sexually assaulting her, strangling her, and leaving her body in an empty house in the Thanh Nưa Commune.
Vương Văn Hùng, 35, from Tân Thuỷ bloc, Tuần Giáo District of Điện Biên, are accused of robbing, raping and murdering Cao Mỹ Duyên earlier this month.
Bùi Văn Công, 44, was accused of killing, raping, robbing, capturing and illegally storing drugs while Phạm Văn Nhiệm, 43 from the same district was accused of allegedly killing and raping and Lường Văn Hùng, 28 and Lường Văn Lả, 28, will be prosecuted for the murder. They are all from the province’s Điện Biên District.
The police and relevant agencies on Sunday exhumed the body of 22-year-old Duyên, who had been living in Thanh Hưng Commune, Điện Biên District, as part of the investigation.
According to the investigation force, the defendants said Công plotted with Vương Văn Hùng on February 1 to rob Duyên. On February 3, Công took Hùng to Mường Thanh market where Duyên sold chicken to Hùng so he could recognise Duyên. Công then asked Hùng to find Duyên’s mobile phone number to call and order her to ship chickens for them to a destination in order to rob her.
On February 4, Vương Văn Hùng went to Mường Thanh market at around 4pm to buy chicken. He made friends with Duyên and asked for her phone number. At around 4.30pm the same day, Hùng phoned Duyên to order 10 chickens and asked her to ship food to an empty house near Độc Lập Hill in Thanh Trường Town in the province’s Điện Biên Phủ City.
When Duyên arrived, Vương Văn Hùng used a lease to strangle her until she fainted and took her into the house. Hùng then phoned Công who was accompanied by Nhiệm to go to the house. They then raped her and took her to Công’s truck. Hùng took Duyên’s motorbike and her belongings and drove to Điện Biên Phủ City.
At 1am of Feburary 5, Hùng left Duyên’s motorbike in Noong Luống Commune, Điện Biên District and returned home.
On the morning of Feburary 6, Lường Văn Hùng and Lường Văn Lả came to Công’s house and raped her on Công’s truck.
Later the same day, when seeing Duyên becoming weaker, they planned to kill her.
On 12pm of February 6, Vương Văn Hùng and Công used the truck to transport Duyên to Tông Khao cemetery in Thanh Nưa Commune, Điện Biên District. Công then strangled her to death. They then took her body to an empty house in the commune.
Duyên was reported missing at 6:30pm on February 4 (the last day of the last Lunar Year), on her way to deliver chickens to a customer in Điện Biên Phủ City’s Thanh Trường Ward.
At 10:30am on February 7, her body was found at an abandoned house in Thanh Nưa Commune, Điện Biên District.
Crime scene examinations and the autopsy showed that she was strangled.
Hùng was arrested on February 10.
The police seized a motorbike, ATM card, eight chickens and a cage hidden in different places.
On February 11, Duyên’s mobile phone and a SIM card that Hùng had used to call her were found at the house of Hùng’s uncle, Vương Văn Nghĩa, in which he stayed from February 2 until being arrested. — VNS