Court orders probe to fill holes in Vietnam journalist murder

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A court in southern Vietnam Wednesday ordered local police to continue their investigation into the murder of a journalist last year, saying several details have yet to be clarified.

Le Quang Hung, deputy chief of the Long An Province People's Court, told VnExpress that Tran Thuy Lieu, 41, who allegedly killed her husband Le Hoang Hung, would not be tried as proposed by prosecutors.

But he did not reveal what clarifications the court required to try her.

Since Lieu had turned herself in - in February last year - the main suspicion is whether she acted alone as the police and prosecutors claim.

The trial was delayed twice earlier after Hung's family and his employer, Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper, repeatedly called for fresh investigations.

They said Lieu could not have acted alone and wanted the police to look into the possible role of Nguyen Van Tam, former chief of the provincial Market Management Team No. 5 and allegedly Lieu's lover, in the murder.

The police had said earlier that Tam, who was dismissed last August for gambling in Cambodia and his affair with Lieu, had advised her on how to mislead investigators.

They had recommended a charge of "murder" against Lieu last July, but prosecutors turned it down and called for further investigations.

But after completing a fresh probe, the police again concluded Lieu was the only suspect.

The prosecutor's office then charged Lieu with murder out of "vile motives" which carries a sentence of 12 years to death.

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According to the indictment, in mid-2010 she and Hung had many quarrels after he discovered that she gambled in Cambodia and had an affair.

As a result, she allegedly set her husband on fire on January 19 when he was sleeping in their house in Tan An town.

But then she rushed him to hospital where he died 10 days later.

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