Stone throwing continues to terrorize bus travelers in Vietnam

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A sleeper bus on Ho Chi Minh City - Gia Lai route suffers a broken windshield from a stone thrown by some vandal on the National Highway 14. Photo: Tran Hieu A sleeper bus on Ho Chi Minh City - Gia Lai route suffers a broken windshield from a stone thrown by some vandal on the National Highway 14. Photo: Tran Hieu

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Two men have been arrested in the southern Binh Phuoc Province for allegedly throwing stones at passing buses, a scourge that has emerged in several localities and sparked a nationwide investigation.
The police arrested Nguyen Van Nghia, 19, and Tran Van Quan, 38, Tuesday after their underage accomplice turned himself in for throwing stones at buses on Provincial Road 741 on Sunday.
Duong Trung Thanh was let out since he is under 18, the age of criminal responsibility.
The trio reportedly went to the road to throw stones at passing buses following a heavy drinking session.
They hit one bus going from Binh Phuoc to Binh Duong, breaking its front and side glasses.
Nghia went home after that while Quan and Thanh stayed back and threw a stone at one more bus.
The driver of that bus chased after them together with some local residents, but the two managed to flee though they left their motorbike behind.
Thanh turned himself in several hours later which led to the arrests of Nghia and Quan.
The incident was one of many in recent times in which stones have sometimes injured passengers.
At 9:15 PM Tuesday miscreants threw stones at two buses belonging to the Ho Chi Minh City-based Tan Nien Company on National Highway 14 in Dak Lak Province, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.
“When we were heading towards Buon Ma Thuot town, three men on the center divider suddenly threw stones at us and broke a windshield,” the company’s director, Pham Van Nien, said.
The men quickly fled into a dark alley when the buses stopped, he added.
The drivers reported to the police before resuming their journey.
On Monday five buses were damaged when someone threw stones at them on National Highway 14 in Kon Tum Province.
One passenger suffered a head injury.
Following the incidents, the National Traffic Safety Committee called on local authorities to investigate them.
Rocks have been a threat for passengers aboard vehicles especially in the central region.
The miscreants, most of them young people, used to target trains but have turned to buses in recent years after trains installed iron bars on windows.
A court in central Vietnam recently sentenced a 17-year-old boy to four years in jail for throwing stones at two buses on a national highway and causing a passenger to lose an eye last September.
The boy, who was also ordered to pay the victim VND50 million (US$2,292), told the court he had thrown stones at passing vehicles "for fun."

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