Lover files suit against woman charged with journalist's murder, demands debt repayment

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A former official in the southern province of Long An has filed a lawsuit against his alleged lover who is in prison awaiting trial for murdering her husband, asking for repayment of money he claims to have loaned her.

The Tan An Town's People's Court Monday said that it has received a petition from Nguyen Van Tam, former chief of the provincial Market Management Team No. 5, and his wife Pham Thi Quynh Mai.

The couple claim that they lent Tran Thuy Lieu VND100 million ($4,800) in June 2009 and another VND50 million ($2,400) in August that same year.

They said they were filing the suit as Lieu has not paid them any interest since January last year when her husband, Le Hoang Hung, was killed. Until then, Lieu had paid back  VND78 million ($3,700), the couple said.

Tam and Mai also asked the court to order Lieu to transfer a 100-square-meter land lot to them, saying that she already sold it to them for VND260 million ($12,500), but had later mortgaged it to take a bank loan.

Since Lieu turned herself in to police in February last year saying she had killed her husband, Tam has been suspected of being her accomplice.

In fact, police once said Tam, who was dismissed last August for gambling in Cambodia and his suspected affair with Lieu, had advised her on how to mislead investigators.

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However, after two additional investigations ordered by the provincial prosecutors and People's Court, Long An police have still concluded that Lieu acted alone.

They said on January 19, 2011, Lieu set Hung on fire on fire when he was sleeping at their house in Tan An town after many quarrels, but then she rushed him to hospital where he died 10 days later.

Following police's conclusions, the provincial People's Procuracy filed a charge of murder against Lieu early this month.

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