Official sacked for attacking street vendor in Vietnam, police report awaited

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 A still from a video clip recorded by a passerby shows a civil servant overpowering Trinh Xuan Tinh (C), a street vendor, in Binh Thanh District, HCMC, on December 6 / FILE PHOTO

Ho Chi Minh City authorities have sacked an official from the Urban Management Unit and suspended another for allegedly assaulting a street vendor last week.

Nguyen Van Quy, chairman of the Ward 25 People's Committee in Binh Thanh District, announced the action taken against Tran Duy Nhat, 28, and Tan Quay Hung, 27, Friday.

They were among a group of unit officials who allegedly abused and assaulted a local man while on duty clearing local streets of street vendors on December 6.

Part of the manhandling of poverty-stricken fruit seller Trinh Xuan Tinh, 34, was caught on video. Tinh had tried to stop the officials from seizing his motorbike.

Quy said all the officials on duty that day had to write reports and local authorities punished them accordingly.

Wrongdoers would also be punished in accordance with the law once police conclude their investigation, he said.

Tinh was parking his bike on D1 Street to sell fruits when the officials arrived.

While other vendors fled, Tinh was caught on the spot because he was unable to start his vehicle.

The officials confiscated his bike, but Tinh attempted to keep it, saying that it was his sole means of earning a living.

According to Tinh and witnesses, the men then handcuffed, beat, and tasered him and left him unconscious on the ground for nearly an hour before taking him to hospital.

Earlier, speaking to reporters, Quy had denied that the officials had assaulted Tinh though their action was captured by passers-by on their phone cameras and there were a number of witnesses. 

Quy accused Tinh of kicking one of his men.

"Without hearing full reports and checking the facts, I had spoken hastily to the media, making the public think I was trying to cover up my subordinates' wrongdoings," Quy said of his previous statements.

"I also would like to apologize to Tinh," he added.

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