Former cop among seven sentenced to death for drug trafficking

By Nguyen Quy   August 22, 2020 | 12:00 am PT
Former cop among seven sentenced to death for drug trafficking
Police guard a trial against a heroin trafficking ring in Dien Bien Province, August 21, 2020. Photo by Vietnam News Agency.
A court in the northern province of Dien Bien on Friday sentenced seven people to death and three others to life imprisonment for trafficking over 52 kg of heroin.

Those getting death included two former commune officials Hang A De, 40, and Hang A Giang, 34, and former police officer Sung A Tua, 33, Vietnam News Agency reported.

Patrolling anti-drug police officers in Dien Bien arrested Mua A Lenh, 33, for illegally trading 655 grams of heroin in Muong Cha District in May 2019.

Expanding their investigation, the police found Lenh and nine others were part of a ring that had illegally transported around 51.6 kg of heroin from Laos into Dien Bien, 500 kilometers west of Hanoi, in October 2018.

Lenh was found guilty of "illegal trading and trafficking of narcotic substances" while nine others were charged with "illegal trafficking of narcotic substances."

Those convicted of possessing or smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or more than 2.5 kilograms of methamphetamine face the death penalty. The production or sale of 100 grams of heroin or 300 grams of other illegal narcotics is also punishable by death.

But despite some of the world's toughest drug laws, drug busts remain a frequent occurrence in Vietnam.

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