September 6, 2010
Media in Vietnam and overseas,
International human rights organisations,
Concerned people all over the world,
To date, my husband, a university lecturer at the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology, has been detained by the investigative department of the political police for 24 days without any formal notification to my family.
Right after the arrest of Pham Minh Hoang on August 13, 2010, I contacted attorney Tran Vu Hai to formally take up the case. According to communications with Mr. Hai, I’ve learned that with an emergency warrant to arrest my husband, the police can only detain him for a maximum of 9 days. After that, any further detainment must be come from an official order of temporary detention, with the approval of the People’s Procuratorate, and subsequently must be made public to my family.
On August 23rd, 10 days after the arrest, the investigation unit informed me that they intended to issue an official order to detain my husband for 4 months and that this decision had been transferred to the People’s Procuratorate for approval. On Friday, August 27th, I contacted the unit for the formal decision on the case, and they told me the notification had been sent to me by post and told me to go home to wait for several days. By now, I have not received any such document. I’ve contacted the investigation unit regarding this document and the only answer I got was just to keep waiting!
Pursuant to Section 4, Article 88 of the (Vietnamese) Criminal Procedure Code, if the investigation authority issues a temporary detention order, then they are mandated to inform the family immediately. But it has been 14 days today since the limit of the initial arrest had ended on August 23rd and I have not been formally notified of my husband’s charges nor the reasons for his continual detainment.
This situation has caused me great distress and anxiety. I’m even more troubled to know that the French Consulate General himself has not been informed by the Vietnamese authorities of the charges they have arrested my husband under. The lack of transparency in this investigation is a miscarriage of justice as the authorities have violated their own laws by continuing to detain of my husband without due process.
When arresting my husband, they couldn’t produce any evidence to accuse him of the “plot to overthrow the government,” according to the Article 79 of the Penal Code that they based their arrest on. Now the ambiguity continues. All such acts have made me very worried for my husband, for I do not know how long this arbitrary detention will last. As a result, I have filed a formal complaint against the police for their violation of Item 4 of Article 88 of the Criminal Procedure Code to the Minister of Public Security and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate and am demanding for the immediate release of my husband.
I’ve also written this letter to urge all concerned supporters around the world, media organisations and international human rights groups to compel the Vietnamese government to produce the official charges for which my husband is being held under. Facing the silence of the Vietnamese government and the lack of transparency by the political police, I’m afraid that they will keep my husband indefinitely.
I sincerely thank you for your concern.
Le Thi Kieu Oanh
423 Nguyen Trinh Phuong, Ward 8, District 10, Ho Chi Minh City
Telephone: +84 838 532 010; +84 93 83 45 343
Our family’s email address:
Mr. Pham Duy Khanh: email@example.com
Because I am not able to directly send out this letter, I’ve asked Khanh to help distribute it.