Police find gun, tear gas in Hanoi hostage-taker’s room

By Ha An, Thanh Nien News

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Police question Binh on Wednesday in Hanoi. Photo: Ha Ans Police question Binh on Wednesday in Hanoi. Photo: Ha Ans

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Hanoi police recovered of an air pistol and ammunition from the room of a man who stabbed a woman and took her children hostage on Tuesday morning.

A canister of tear gas and an expandable baton were also found in Tran Thanh Binh’s rented room in Long Bien district.

Binh, 28, told police that he caught a bus to the northern province of Lao Cai, which borders China, to buy the weapons.

Police say he planned to use the arsenal to commit a series of robberies in the capitol and spent time casing residential apartment blocks, searching for targets.

Binh said that he chose the Thanh Xuan Bac tenement’s E7 block for his first robbery, since he had stayed at his aunt’s apartment in the building in March after taking his wife to the city to work as a day laborer.

Police said they asked Do Thi Anh Hong--the woman Binh stabbed while holed up in her apartment on Tuesday--to have her injury assessed by doctors before they charged him.

Weapons seized at a room rent by Tran Thanh Binh, who was arrested on Tuesday for stabbing a woman and took her children hostage in Hanoi.
Binh allegedly broke into Hong's 4th floor apartment after she left to go exercise around 5am--leaving her two children and housekeeper asleep inside.

When Hong tried to unlock her door upon her return, Binh slashed her hand.

Hong ran from the scene, shouting for help. Neighbors rushed her to the hospital and police arrived soon afterward.

They successfully persuaded Binh to release Hong's 7-year old girl and her housekeeper, one after another, at around 8am.

He released his last hostage, Hong's 11-year old son, at 10:45am.

Binh was arrested soon afterward and taken away in an unmarked car.

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