A court in Dak Lak Province in the Central Highlands has ordered prosecutors to pay compensation of more than VND2.8 billion (US$128,400) to a man for detaining him for a crime he did not commit, in the process hurting his business.
Prosecutors in the provincial capital Buon Ma Thuot approved a warrant to arrest Dinh Quang Dien in June 2011 based on an anonymous complaint that he had committed fraud.
Dien, the owner of a wood processing company, was in custody for eight months until a police investigation established that he was innocent.
The prosecutors publicly apologized to Dien in early 2013 but refused to meet his compensation claim of nearly VND7 billion.
So he went to court.
Dien said at the trial that he believed he lost more than VND21 billion because of the detention as customers cancelled contracts and his interest on loans swelled.
But he consulted lawyers and they suggested he should ask for a third of that amount.
In the end, the judges granted him less than half that amount, dismissing his claims of interest on private loans, insurance for his workers and damaged machines.
Dien in his company. He said most of his equipment wasted away after being unused for a long time. Photo credit: Tuoi Tre
Dien told the media after the trial that he has a strong basis for demanding that amount and would file an appeal in the provincial court.
Tuoi Tre newspaper quoted him as saying: “If I was not arrested, I would have had many contracts and made profits. I could have paid all the bank loans. No equipment would have rusted, my company would have been operating normally and gained more prestige.
“But I’ve lost everything.”