The mentally deranged South Korean husband who admitted to murdering his Vietnamese wife in July was sentenced to 12 years in prison on Thursday by a Korean court.
Prosecutors last month suggested life-in-prison for Jang Do Hyo as he committed the crime despite receiving treatment for his condition many times. Prosecutors argued that Hyo posed a future risk to society.
But the judge determined that Hyo was mentally ill during the murder and has showed regret afterward, local news website VnExpress said Friday, citing an AFP report.
The 47-year-old requires mental treatment in jail and will have to wear an electronic monitoring device for ten years after his release, according to an announcement made at the trial.
Hyo stabbed his 20-year-old wife Thach Thi Hoang Ngoc, of Can Tho, to death just eight days after her arrival in the country. They wed early this year through a marriage brokerage firm.
He told the police he heard a voice in his head asking him to kill Ngoc during their quarrel.
Since July 2005, Hyo has been treated 57 times for mental illness, but stopped taking medicine after the marriage. Police say Hyo was afraid his wife would discover his past problems.
Seoul authorities have compensated Ngoc's family US$25,000.
Following the case, South Korea pledged to make Korean men looking to marry foreign women undergo a cultural education program.
More than one-third of South Korean men, most of them farmers and fishermen, married foreign women last year, according to figures released by Korean authorities.
Statistics from the South Korean Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City showed that around 27,500 Vietnamese women had been granted marriage visas by 2008 and around 8,000 such visas were granted in 2009 alone. This means around 35,500 Vietnamese women had migrated to South Korea for marriage by the end of 2009.
Most of these marriages were conducted by illegal brokerage firms.
Over the last two decades, poverty has driven thousands of women from poor families, especially the Mekong Delta, to marry older men, mainly from South Korea and Taiwan.