Youth threatening traffic cops in northern Vietnam faces criminal charges

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Police in the northern province of Lang Son have suggested the filing of criminal charges against an 18-year-old youth who threatened to assault two traffic police officers after being stopped for not wearing a crash helmet.

The youth, who was arrested June 8 several hours after he threatened the cops with a broken bottle, has been identified as Hoang Minh Phong, a resident of Dong Dang Town in Cao Loc District, according to a Monday report by news website VnExpress.

A video posted on the Internet showed Phong break a glass bottle and swinging the two halves to threaten the police. He also fetched an iron chain from a local's house, before running away with the police chasing him.

The two police officers, who are new to the job, responded to the attacks by stepping back and bending to avoid being hurt.

Phong should be charged with "opposing officials on duty," the police have proposed to local prosecutors.

He had just finished serving more than four months in jail for trafficking firecrackers, which are banned in Vietnam.


Traffic police threatened, assaulted in northern Vietnam

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Following the incident, the Lang Son Police Department has said it will punish police officers who do not do their job properly and earn negative public opinions.

"This is a lesson for everyone," Hoang Anh, police chief of Lang Son Town, the province's capital city, was quoted by the Tien Phong newspaper as saying.

Many residents of Dong Dang Town say it is common that people do not wear helmets in the area although it has been made mandatory since December 2007.

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