Trial of Hanoian agitator delayed

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The trial of a 54-year-old man who filed suit against Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung over the construction of bauxite mines in the Central Highlands would be delayed until next month, a source told Thanh Nien on Wednesday.

Last December, the Hanoi Prosecutors' Office charged Cu Huy Ha Vu with "distributing propaganda against the State of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam" under Article 88 of the Criminal Code.

Vu could face up to 20 years in jail, if convicted.

According to the indictment, between 2009 and October, 2010, Vu posted materials and interviews criticizing the state on the internet.

The indictment charges that Vu had called for the overthrow of the government with the help of foreign intervention and the establishment of a multi-party government.

The articles and interviews allegedly maligned Party and State guidelines and policies, defamed the administration and State institutions, and blackened the legacy of the Vietnamese people's resistance wars.

Vu's trial had been scheduled for March 24. However, it has been delayed until April 4.

Vu's wife, Nguyen Thi Duong Ha Esq, has not been permitted to defend her husband, according to local news website VnExpress.

On November 15, 2010, Ho Chi Minh City Police arrested Vu at a hotel in District 6.

Vu is the son of well-known poet Cu Huy Can and a nephew of Xuan Dieu, also one of the country's most famed poets.

He obtained a doctorate in law in France and ran a law firm with his wife in Hanoi before being detained. However, Vu is not a practicing lawyer.

Last year, he filed a petition with the Hanoi People's Court against Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung for approving a plan to build bauxite mines in the Central Highlands. The suit was dismissed.

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