dissident lawyer and son of a Vietnamese communist revolutionary leader
Cù Huy Hà Vũ
to seven years in prison and a further three years' house arrest
calling for an end to Vietnam's government and its
Zamaneh Source: Agenzia Fides
4, April 2011 the trial of Cù Huy Hà Vũ facing up to 12 years facing
a jail term ranging from 3 to 12 years, was beginning . The trial, held
in the Hanoi People's Court, was not public, as the government had
promised, and lasted only four hours. The charge against Cù Huy Hà Vũ
is very long, "spreading propaganda against the state, publication
of articles, interviews with foreign media in order to sully the
authority of the people’s government, implementation of psychological
warfare, seeking the fall of the regime and the implementation of a multiparty
Cù Huy Hà Vũ was sentenced
after a dramatic one-day trial in Hanoi in which one of his defence
attorneys was ejected by the judge and his other three lawyers walk out
in protest. Vu was left alone to defend himself and had several heated
exchanges with the judge.During the
trial, Vu did not admit to any violations. "I did not commit the crime
of spreading propaganda against the state. This criminal case was
invented against me. This case is completely illegal." Vu told the
stopped traffic around the courthouse during the trial and pushed
onlookers away. Foreign media were kept in an area outside the main
courtroom and made to watch the proceedings on closed-circuit television.
Vu’s wife, lawyer Nguyen Thi Duong Ha, said she was watched by a
plainclothes officer during the course of the trial and made to sit in a
specific area of the courtroom.
She said that as the judge did not comply with the demand that the
documents be read in court, the proceedings should have been declared a
mistrial. Ha added that her husband’s requests to change the jury, all of
whom were members of the Communist Party, and the prosecutor, who Vu had
once brought suit against in the past, were both rejected.
Cù Huy Hà Vũwas sentenced
to seven years in prison and and three years of house detention
afterwards for "spreading anti-state propaganda" on Article 88,
Section 1 of the Criminal Code.Judge Nguyen Huu Chinh said "Born and raised
into a revolutionary family, he did not sustain that tradition but
instead committed erroneous acts". The court convicted him of
conducting propaganda against the state for calling for a multiparty
government system, demanding the abolition of the Community party's
leadership, defaming the state and distorting Vietnam's struggle for
independence by calling the country's war against the US a civil war.
Vietnam Lawyers’ Federation, because it has disbarred him after he filed
the petition to the Hanoi People’s Court asking to strike down Dung’s
approval for a bauxite mining project, has stated that Cù Huy Hà Vũ is not a lawyer and
asked the media to accurately report about Cu Huy Ha Vu’s title to
avoid misunderstanding and to not harm the prestige of lawyers. The law
office named Cu Huy Ha Vu, at 24 Dien Bien Phu, Hanoi, is chaired by
lawyer Nguyen Thi Duong, Cu Huy Ha Vu’s wife.
a prominent government critic and a dissident in Vietnam, he has been
nationally well-known for filing, in 2009, a charge against the
Politforio Standing Committee member – Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung
regarding to his outrage bauxite mining in Vietnam's region of Central
Highlands Tay Nguyen. Consequently, as Cu Huy Ha Vu's prediction, the
People's Court of Hanoi, and after that, the Vietnam Supreme Court
rejected the lawsuit.
early September 2010, Cù Huy Hà Vũ pursued another legal
protestation against the prime minister for his Determination No.136. It
is the decision that strictly prohibited citizens from filing petitions
and complaints against the communist government.
for an amendment of Article 4 of The Vietnam ConstitutionOne of the most
distinctive moves of Cù Huy Hà Vũ was his vigorous demand for an
official eradication of the Article 4 of the current Constitution of
Vietnam, by which it states the Communist Party of Vietnam as the only
force adhering leadership of the State and society.
October 2010, Cu Huy Ha Vu's law firm was in charge of a defense for the
Catholics of Con Dau parish in Da Nang, those who was seized by legal authority,
taking them into custody since May after a police's crack down on a
funeral ceremony taking place on a disputed claimed-to-be churchyard. In
a predictable initiative, the People's Court of the local district
rejected granting permission for Cu Huy Ha Vu's law firm the rights to
represent those Christian defendants.
was later arrested in November 2010 which was taken place in a Ho Chi
Minh-based hotel. Photos from the security force showed him in a room
with another woman presented as a prostitute but who was in fact a female
lawyer in Ho Chi Minh City . The police later seized his laptop.
the same time, police dispatched another team to raid his home and law
office in Hanoi, seizing documents “containing distorted information
against the people’s administration and calling for the overthrow of the
regime, pluralism, multi-party system, and foreign intervention which
goes contrary to the nation’s interest.”
has been taken into custody for, according to the communist-controlled
media state, "propaganda agaist the state" and "plotting
to overthrow the communist government of Vietnam".
to indictment from prosecuting agencies, from 2009 to October 2010, Vu
wrote many anti-government articles and posted them on the Internet. He
also gave incorrect information at interviews.
to a document from the investigation unit, of the 240 pages seized from
Vu, police found one article written by him titled “"Chiến
tranh Việt Nam và ngày 30/4 dưới mắt tiến sĩ
CùHuyHàVũ" (the Vietnam War and the April 30 day
under the eyes of Dr. Cu Huy
Ha Vu) and the article "Phải đa đảng mới
chống được lạm quyền" (we must
have a multi-party system to fight power abuse” …