Delta man arrested for abusing baby

TN News

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Police in the Mekong Delta's Dong Thap Province have detained a man to investigate his abuse of a nine-month-old baby who was sent to hospital with the injuries last week.

Le Thanh Tam, 34, had been beating the child of Nguyen Thi Xuan Lan for several months while living with her as husband and wife.

The baby girl's father, a Taiwanese national, allegedly left his wife and child before Tam came into the picture.

Lan also beat the child but she was released to take care of the baby at a nearby hospital.

Officer Le Xuan Lang said police will reccomend criminal charges against Tam, who used a cell phone to record his abusive acts.

"The footage shows the child beaten and tortured brutally," Lang said.

Nguyen Van Ve, a doctor at Dong Thap General Hospital, said the baby's body is addled with bruises and three severe injuries on one thigh and under her feet.

"We have concluded that someone had used fire to press on those spots to cause burns. The burns have ulcerated and caused deep damage so they are hard to treat," Ve said.

Tran Van Hung, a local commune official, said Lan's family is rather detached from neighbors, so the abuse went on for a while until neighbors reported that the child kept crying strangely.

Lan's mother also treated the child badly, police said.

The family told local authorities the baby's birth has brought bad luck, so they had to beat her to chase that away.

Local authorities are looking for someone to nurse the child since her mother, Lan, and her grandmother have starved her during days at hospital --forcing strangers to buy her milk.

Police say they are continuing their investigation into the matter.

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