Vietnam police probe allegations officials demolished farmer's houses

TN News

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Police in Hai Phong Wednesday began investigation into the destruction of a farmer's two houses allegedly at the behest of local officials.

The raze followed a controversial land revocation last month which ended in the farmer shooting at authorities.

Police opened the investigation after three local men said government and Party leaders in Tien Lang District and Vinh Quang Commune had paid them to raze the houses.

Major Nguyen Duy Nhan of the investigation team said they were collecting evidence to press charges of "destroying citizens' property" against people responsible.

The effort to evict Doan Van Vuon and his three brothers from his houses and revoke their land on January 5 ended in the four using homemade guns and bombs against police officers and soldiers. They were subsequently arrested.

Many lawyers and former officials said the revocation violated the 1993 Land Law.

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News about the houses being razed sparked even more public outrage.

District authorities had blamed it on "angry neighbors" who disliked Vuon's protests.

The excavator used to knock over the houses has been seized.

More than a month after the incident city authorities suspended this week the Tien Lang District chairman and vice chairman for ordering the revocation.

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