Vietnamese Journalist Set on Fire has Passed Away
Yesterday (January 29), Vietnamese media reported that 50-year old journalist Le Hoang Hung had passed away in hospital. Le had been battling severe second and third degree burns and constant blood infection.
Le’s story made international news after he was badly burned when an intruder broke into his family’s home as they were sleeping, then doused a chemical on him before he was set on fire.
Le suffered third-degree burns to half of his body and was sent to Cho Ray Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City. While police investigate the case, another reporter, a colleague of Le, said that he was assigned to three southern Mekong Delta provinces — Long An, Tien Giang and Ben Tre and that “He covered everything from land disputes, the police beat to health care and education (…) It could be a revenge.”
According to Phap Luat Newspaper, Le Hoang Hung was born in 1960 in Chau Thanh District, Tien Giang Province, and started his journalism career in 1979. He joined Labourer (Người Lao Động) newspaper in 2002. Le leaves behind a wife and two girls, 12 and 17 years old.
The murder of Le Hoang Hung has shocked the media and caused many netizens and online news readers to share their comments and condolences. We have translated a selection from Vietnamese online users below.
Update via: Monsters & Critics, Feb. 21, 2011
Hanoi – Police in Vietnam have arrested the wife of a local journalist after she confessed to burning him to death.
Le Hoang Hung, an investigative reporter for newspaper Nguoi Lao Dong, was doused with chemicals and set ablaze on the night of January 19. He died 10 days later in hospital.
Police said Tran Thuy Lieu, 40, confessed to murdering her husband because of a domestic conflict arising from her gambling.
The case ended month-long speculation that the 50-year-old was killed for his high-profile reporting on underworld thugs and corruption, local media said.
The case attracted public attention in Vietnam and abroad.
According to some local press reports, Lieu’s gambling in casinos in Cambodia left her with debts of up to 50,000 dollars. She had denied those allegations and threatened to sue the newspapers involved.
This is definitely a revenge murder of a journalist exposing many cases of corruption.
Hồ Xuân Hải:
Please share my condolences with Le Hoang Hung’s family. The police need to do everything they can in their investigation to deal with the murderer. They need to clarify the details related to all the cases that the journalist had been writing about.
Một người Đồng Nai:
In light of all that is negative and unjust about society today, we very much need dedicated journalists like this, who write "hot stories" that challenge the bad, the evil. The authorities need to find and punish the perpetrator of this crime.
God, I thought he had been recovering. Please share my condolences for the family!
@GDVuonTaoNgo: Recovering? Unless they [the perpetrators?] found their way to the hospital?
@blackknight89: No friend, he succumbed to infections at the hospital. When you’ve got severe burns like that it’s easy to be infected. But all patients go when their time is up anyway.
Nhat Minh Dang:
A writer who dared challenge to find the truth has passed away. Deep regrets and condolences go to the family of the journalist. I hope your soul will rest in peace.
"Despite Labourer (Người Lao Động) newspaper contacting the police investigators in Long An Province for updates everyday, we have not received any results regarding this unfortunate case."
Will the murderer really be brought out? So how much trust will the people have left for the authorities now?