Vietnamese gets 12 years for forcing wife to drink weed killer

By Tam Ngoc, Thanh Nien News

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Pham Xuan Lanh waits for his verdict. Photo: Tam Ngoc Pham Xuan Lanh waits for his verdict. Photo: Tam Ngoc


A court in the central province of Binh Dinh on Wednesday sentenced a local man to 12 years in prison for forcing his wife to drink a can of herbicide. 
According to an indictment released at the court, Pham Xuan Lanh poured the poisonous liquid into the mouth and nose of his wife several times on February 13.
Lanh was found guilty of murder. Vietnam makes no distinction between attempted murder and murder as the Penal Code still holds those  who commit incomplete crimes legally accountable.
The case file showed that Lanh, 28, also used a knife to threaten his 25-year old wife and put a pillow on her face to suffocate her. 
When Lanh later discovered that his wife became weak and cold, he stopped the assault and called some neighbors to take her to hospital.
The husband told the court that he thought his acts were “normal.”
“I knew that the weed killer was poisonous. But in my area, some drank it and died, but some others were just fine after swallowing it,” said Lanh.
“I just wanted to threaten her so that she would not commit adultery.
"Beating a spouse in anger is okay. We love each other, so that’s just a normal thing.”
Lanh said that he had seen a text message in her phone, prompting him to believe that she was having an affair. 
At the court, the wife reportedly asked for a lighter sentence, saying that their 8-year-old son needs his father.
The court rejected her request. 

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