Couple sentenced to 24 years in jail for kidnapping infant

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A Ho Chi Minh City court Friday sentenced a couple to a total of 24 years in prison for kidnapping a three-month-old infant last year.

Vo Thi Thanh Thuy, 30, convinced her 53-year-old lover Nguyen Xuan Tam to join her in committing the crime as they were both HIV positive and needed money for treatment, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.

They kidnapped a three-month-old boy last September from the family that Thuy was working for as a helper, and demanded 50 taels of gold as a ransom, then worth around VND2.36 billion ($113,000).

Thuy got 13 years and Tam 11 for "kidnapping" and "appropriating others' property".

The woman said at the trial that she knew the family was wealthy and saving money to build a house.

After kidnapping the baby, they left him at a local private kindergarten, introducing themselves as the parents who needed to go away for several days.

They threatened to infect the baby with the virus if the parents called the police.

After informing the police, the parents pretended to agree to pay the ransom. Thuy and Tam were arrested three days later on September 13 when they came to an appointed place to receive the ransom.

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