Ethics teacher gets life in jail for raping minor girls

By Son Thuy   April 8, 2019 | 05:26 pm PT
Ethics teacher gets life in jail for raping minor girls
Nguyen Quang Chung (C), stands trial in November 2018, where he received 24 years imprisonment for raping third-grade girls. Photo by VnExpress/Nghi Xuan
A former primary school teacher in Da Nang will spend the rest of his life in jail for raping third-grade girls.

An appeal court in Da Nang on Monday overturned a lower court’s 24-year jail term awarded to Nguyen Quang Chung, and sentenced him to life imprisonment.

Chung, 50, was found guilty of raping and molesting several third-grade girls for over a year, and had received the 24-year jail term at a trial in November last year. However, prosecutors appealed to the higher court, asking for a heavier sentence.

Having sex with a child under 13 years of age is considered rape, punishable by death under Vietnam’s Penal Code.

According to the indictment, for about a year until March 2016, Chung asked several third-grade students to come into his office during break time at school under various guises and raped them.

After the girls told their parents, a complaint was filed with the school board and a criminal probe launched by the police.

Chung taught ethics and was in charge of the school's Ho Chi Minh Young Pioneer Organization, a youth organization which is part of all public primary and junior high schools in Vietnam.

Le Thi Thanh Thao, then the school’s principal, told VnExpress that she talked to the students and heard details of the abuse.

"One student said she was asked to clean his office room, another was asked to see him in the computer classroom... According to them, the abuse happened many times, and for a long time," Thao said.

According to official reports, approximately one in four children in Vietnam is a victim of abuse and at least 1,300 cases of sexual violence against children are reported each year. The United Nations estimates that the true numbers are higher and consistently alarming.

Vietnam recorded 1,547 child sex abuse cases in 2018, down 2.8 percent from a year ago, according to figures from the Ministry of Public Security.

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