Police in Tien Giang Province have arrested a 20-year-old man for allegedly killing at least three people, including two xe om (motorbike taxi) drivers, after robbing them.
Nguyen Hoai Nam of the Mekong Delta province’s Cho Gao District was arrested in Ninh Thuan Province in the south-central region where he had been hiding, Tien Giang chief investigator Dinh Van Thanh said.
Nam confessed to the police that he had killed three people between September 10 and October 20.
Investigators said that on September 10 Nam allegedly killed 45-year-old Tran Trung Hoang, a man who often sang at local fairs, and stole his motorbike, an iPhone, and a gold chain.
Hoang’s body was found at around 11 p.m. on the same day on a road outside Tien Giang’s My Tho town with dozens of injuries.
20-year-old Nguyen Hoai Nam at a Tien Giang Province police station. Photo: Phuong Ha
Even as the police were investigating Hoang’s death, on October 16 they were informed about a similar crime just a kilometer from the first crime scene.
The victim, xe om driver Le Hoang Thanh, 33, managed to drag himself to a nearby house and was rushed to hospital but succumbed to multiple injuries.
Investigators said Thanh had described the attacker before he died, and tracked down several young men based on the description, including Nam who had recently returned to his parents’ house after 10 years.
But Nam’s parents told them he had left for Ho Chi Minh City.
Four days later, on October 20 passers-by found the body of another xe om driver, 42-year-old Tran Van Lam, at a place not far from the other two crime scenes.
Investigators tracked down Nam who was staying with his girlfriend in Ninh Thuan.
Investigators said Nam’s girlfriend was “cooperative” and her confessions led to his arrest on October 25.
An officer said Nam had sold the stolen motorbikes but kept the iPhone. He said it was surprising that Nam had no criminal record but killed three people.
According to the local police, Nam’s parents make a living by selling fertilizers made from wood ash. They also have a nine-year-old girl.
Nam quit school and walked out of home when he was just 10. His parents said he had returned home for the first time several months ago and said he worked for a factory in HCMC and he had a girlfriend from Ninh Thuan.