The bike of two dog thieves was allegedly burned down in a mob attack in the central province of Nghe An on June 10. One of the thieves was beatened to death, while another was seriously injured.
Another mob attack on dog thieves took place in the north-central province of Nghe An on Monday, leaving one dead and another seriously injured, Dan Tri online newspaper reported.
Colonel Le Xuan Diep, head of Yen Thanh District's police force , was quoted by the newspaper as saying that one of the two alleged thieves succumbed to serious injuries after being hospitalized.
He said the men were beaten black and blue and were bleeding when police arrived at the site in Tan Thanh Commune, Yen Thanh District, to stop the beating.
However, as police were obstructed by locals, it took them a while to rescue the men and send them to hospital, Diep said.
The duo's motorbike was burned down, he said.
Initial information was that the men, whose identifies were not revealed, entered a village in the commune around 5.30 a.m. to steal dogs.
When they were attempting to escape on the bike with a dog in a sack, they were caught and stopped by locals.
Police are investigating.
On May 28, local residents in the northern province of Hai Duong also allegedly killed a man and severely injured another on suspicion that they had attempted to steal dogs.
Dog theft is common in Vietnam. Stolen dogs can be sold for food for between VND100,000 and VND200,000 (US$4.8-$9.6) per kilogram.
The stolen dogs are often valued at less than VND2 million the threshold for criminal charges and thus thieves only face a fine.
Furious residents often take matters into their own hands, unleashing their rage on the thieves instead of handing them over to the police.
In most cases, police have been unable to pinpoint exactly who was responsible for the mob attacks and killings of alleged dog thieves.
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