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Saigon child abused to death used to be locked in kennel: police

By Thao Mi   May 4, 2022 | 09:30 pm PT
Saigon child abused to death used to be locked in kennel: police
A memorial set up by neighbors at an apartment complex in HCMC's Binh Thanh District for an eight-year-old girl abused to death by her father's fiancée, December 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Dinh Van
An eight-year-old girl allegedly beaten to death by her father's fiancée used to be locked in a kennel and forced to kneel for hours while alive, the police said.

Prosecutors told a Ho Chi Minh City court Wednesday that between Dec. 7 and 22 last year, Nguyen Vo Quynh Trang, 26, had used rattan and wooden rods to beat Van An.

She used to lock An, who was eight then, in a kennel and make her girl kneel while studying for "hours." At times she would remove the girl's clothes, make her kneel and raise both arms and then hit her with the rods.

The father, Nguyen Kim Trung Thai, 36, was aware of the cruelty but did not interfere, and in fact would join Trang in abusing the child.

Trang and Thai had lived together for over a year since Thai's divorce from his ex-wife. A court had decided that as the older child An would live with the father while her younger brother would live with their mother.

Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, the girl had to stay at home and study online since October last year. Thai left his daughter in Trang's care and repeatedly refused to allow the biological mother to visit the girl.

The prosecutors said that from 10 p.m. on Dec. 10 to 2 a.m. on Dec. 11 last year, the couple took turns to "torture" the girl and ended up injuring her vital organs.

Again on Dec. 22 Trang hit the child repeatedly from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. until she passed out. She was taken to hospital, but declared dead on arrival.

Her injuries prompted doctors to contact the police.

Autopsy results determined the girl had suffered a hematoma under the skin of her forehead, mild cerebral edema and broken ribs.

Trang and Thai told the police they would hit the girl to make sure she "became a good child and studied harder."

Investigators said Thai's family does not allow him to marry Trang while he himself does not want to have more kids, upsetting her as a result.

Trang used to meet An's mother and instruct her not to come anywhere near their apartment to see the girl.

After his daughter was confirmed dead, Thai deleted all camera footage in the apartment, making it harder for investigators to piece things together.

Trang faces charges of "murder" and "abuse" and Thai is indicted for "abuse" and "concealment of crimes."

If convicted, Trang faces death while Thai will get eight years in prison.

 
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