SOCIETY IN BRIEF 11/1
13:48 11/01/2012
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Fire destroys two homes in north

A fire destroyed two houses in Village 1 in northern mountainous Yen Bai Province"s Phuc Loc Commune yesterday morning, Jan 10.

The fire started in a timber house owned by Phung Van Do then spread to his son"s house next door.

No one was at home to extinguish the fire.

Total damages were estimated to reach VND40 million (US$1,900). An investigation of the incident is ongoing.

‘Super thief’ targeting state agencies arrested

SOCIETY IN BRIEF 11/1 Nguyen Tan Vu is arrested on January 8, 2012 in Son Tra District of the central city of Da Nang. (Photo: Tuoi Tre)

Police in the central city of Da Nang have arrested a notorious thief who was allegedly involved in 13 cases of thefts and burglaries targeting state agencies in six cities and provinces around Vietnam.

On January 10, Da Nang police indicted Nguyen Tuan Vu, 35, from Vinh Phuc Northern Province on charges of “stealing assets” and detained him for four months, pending investigation.

Vu has been also charged with “escaping from prison”.

On January 7, following a tip off that Vu was traveling in a Toyota Innova to Da Nang from the north, Da Nang city’s police forces lay in wait for him and arrested him in Son Tra District at about 1:00pm on January 8.

The police seized a shotgun, 9 bullets, and VND60 million in cash from him.

According to investigators, before his arrest, Nguyen Tan Vu had two previous convictions of theft and burglary and had escaped from prison while he was serving a 19 year sentence. He had been wanted nationwide since April, 2011.

Unlock magnetic cards within 5 seconds

The police say Vu had burglarized state agencies from north to south. In Da Nang alone, Vu broke into the Da Nang Department of Finance; Civil Engineering Construction Corporation No. 5 (Cienco 5); the Customs office, and other state agencies to steal assets.

At the Cienco 5 headquarters, it took Vu only five seconds to unlock a magnetic card to break into the building. He even took the lift and didn’t turn off security cameras while committing his robbery in the office.

The ‘super’ thief also committed burglaries at the houses of senior official in Dong Nai southern province; the Department of Education and Training in Vinh Phuc northern province (his homet province); the Department of Taxation; the Department of Labor - Invalids and Social Affairs; and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Thanh Hoa central province.

Investigators say Vu often drove his car to look for ‘prey’ in the afternoon, and committed his criminal acts in the evening or at night.

Vu often stole cash from the offices of directors, deputy directors, or treasures, but ignored other valuable assets and high-tech devices like Ipads or computers, they said.

Woman hospitalized 4 times in 6 years of marriage

A woman in Hoai An District, Binh Dinh Province has suffered domestic violence through the six she has lived with her husband, who is a former police officer. The latest incident occurred a few days ago, when the woman was hospitalized in critical condition.

31-year-old Le Thi Hong Tin, of An Chieu Hamlet, An Phong Commune, was taken to the local Health Center after being beaten until she was black and blue and lost a large amount of blood from wounds.

Her husband, Le Thanh Trung, assaulted Tin with two knives when she returned home at 5 pm on January 7 after procuring goods for her home-based grocery.

At 10 pm, one of Tin’s neighbors came to the grocery and found her lying in a pool of blood. The neighbor and some others brought her to her parents’ house, but later took her to the health center due to her serious condition.

On the afternoon of January 8, Tin’s heath condition was slightly better, after having several wounds stitched shut on her palate, but she was still frightened. Meanwhile, Trung and his family did not visit her.

Tin married Trung in 2006, and has not worked since, but assumed housework at his family’s request.

Trung has treated his wife poorly since she could not give birth to a boy. During six years of marriage, she has gotten pregnant five times, but they have had just two daughters so far.

Their first child was a boy but he died soon after birth, the second child died in the womb, and the third and fourth children were girls, who were born in 2009 and 2010.

Recently, Tin became pregnant for the fifth time, and doctors said she had an extrauterine fetus that was later removed.

She was sterilized after this at the suggestion of doctors, who said her health had been reduced seriously and advised her not to get pregnant again.Trung did not sympathize with his wife, and often beat her after he returned home from work.

He once mercilessly said, “Any animal has reproductive ability, if you cannot have it, you had better die,” Tin reported. “His family also mistreated me since I could not give birth to a boy.”

Earlier in March 2011, Trung forced Tin to work in a field under the scorning mid-day sun. When she got tired and came home, he beat her so brutally that she had to flee to her uncle’s house to hide. Trung later found her and hit her head against a column of the house.

Tin was taken to the local hospital where doctors said one of blood vessels in her head was ruptured, and she needed an urgent surgery to repair it.

In another case, Trung used a one-meter long iron stick to strike Tin brutally.

Ho Van Lanh, Tin’s father, said, “I have never been able to relax since my daughter married Trung. Whenever I receive phone calls from her, I am very sad, since she always cries.”

Lanh said he had reported the abuse to local authorities, but they took no action to help Tin.

Nguyen Thi Gai, chairwoman of the Women’s Union of the hamlet, said, “We have heard that Tin’s husband has often beaten Tin so ferociously that she had to be hospitalized, but we cannot interfere since we have not yet received a report about it.”

Plan Int’l pledges more aid for poor central highlanders

Plan International in Vietnam will provide US$3.2 million in support of poor children in the Central Highland province of Kon Tum in the next five years (2011-2016).

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed by the Kon Tum provincial People’s Committee and the organization in Kon Tum city on January 10.

This is a follow up to the project to improve living conditions for poor children in the locality.

The organization will help raise awareness of children who are poor or disadvantaged of their rights and potential, especially in meeting basic needs, while improving necessary skills.

Over the past 15 years, Kon Tum province has received US$25 million in non-refundable aid through 197 projects from 38 organizations of 14 countries and territories.

Most of the projects focus on education, health care, social welfare and rural infrastructure in disadvantaged localities.

Hanoi hospital gives baby to wrong mother

A newborn baby has been mistakenly given to the wrong mother at Hanoi Maternity Hospital.

On January 7, a mother-to-be named Thuy was taken to the hospital and required a Cesarean delivery. At 9am that day, she gave birth to a male baby weighing 3.4kg, with a code no. 550.

However, by that afternoon, when Hung, Thuy’s husband, arrived at the hospital to pick his son up, he couldn’t find any newborn coded no. 550, prompting the hospital staff to search for the boy.

Fortunately, the hospital found that the couple’s lost baby had been mistakenly given to another woman named Oanh, whose newborn baby was coded no. 585, and was being cared for in the isolation ward.

According to Dr. Nguyen Manh Tri of the hospital, every newborn baby is given two cards for identification, one for the baby and the other for the mom.

“The staff member who gave the baby to the wrong mother is in violation of the process of delivered babies. The hospital will discipline her according to current regulations in order to prevent similar incidents in the future,” VnExpress quoted Dr. Tri as saying.

This is not the first case in which newborn babies have recently been given to wrong mothers in hospitals around Vietnam.

On December 7, 2011, a nurse at Quang Ngai General Hospital mixed up babies by handing a male newborn to a woman who had given birth to a girl.

Tran Thi Hong Cam, 22, of Tu Nghia District, Quang Ngai Province, was very surprised when a nurse handed her a boy, since she knew she had given birth to a girl.

Dr. Huynh Ngoc Thanh, head of the department, immediately launched an investigation and finally found that a nurse had handed Cam’s baby girl to 20-year-old Dinh Thi Hoai, who had given birth to

Hanoi man uses fake bomb in attempted robbery

Police in Hanoi have arrested a man they say used a fake bomb to try to rob a Maritime Bank branch situated on Hoang Quoc Viet Street of Cau Giay District.

According to the police, Tran Vu Huy, 27, entered the bank on the afternoon of January 10 with a knife and a bomb with the intention of robbing the institution.

He threatened to detonate a bomb if the bank didn’t give him VND50million (US$2,500).

However, the bank’s security guards and police quickly showed up and arrested him.

At the police station, Huy admitted that he was trying to rob the bank to pay off his debts, and confessed that the bomb was fake.

According to a police report, around 12:00pm on that day, Huy walked into the bank and went up to a teller named Q., when he pulled out a paper from his bag that read: “Put VND50 million (US$2,500) into the bag without alarm and negotiation. If not, I will detonate the bomb” and put a black package on the counter table.

However, the bank’s employee immediately sounded the alarm, and Huy was arrested while he tried to flee the scene.

Huy was a graphic designer, the police said.

Tumor patients regain consciousness after surgery

Two Vietnamese women, who were recently operated on by American surgeon McKay McKinnon to remove their tumors, have regained their consciousness, Dr. Tran Quyet Tien, deputy director of Ho Chi Minh City-based Cho Ray Hospital, announced Monday.

Both patients, who have been diagnosed with neurofibromatosis (human genetic disorder), are now able to open their eyes and move their arms, hands, legs, and other parts of their body, the doctor said.

Kieu Thi My Dung, who carried a 1.5 kg tumor on her face for years, is making a good recovery and can now breathe and drink milk by herself.

After removing Dung’s tumor on January 6, the 20-member surgical team led by Dr. McKinnon then used a part of the patient’s skull bone to recreate her right eye socket which was seriously damaged by the tumor. The team also repositioned her right cheekbone into a more symmetrical position with her left one and recreated the ciliary muscle of her right eye.

Her right ear would be also recreated, the doctor said.

Meanwhile, according to Dr. Le Hanh, head of Cho Ray’s Plastic Surgery Department, 36-year-old Thach Thi Sa Ly, who had plenty of bubble-like lumps covering her body from toe to face, is expected a slow recovery since fluid still leaks from her incisions and could undergo more surgeries to remove the remaining tumors in the future.

Dr. Hanh said Ly’s incisions do not show any symptoms of infection; however, she has to receive milk through a gastric fistula.

Dr. McKinnon, with assistance from a team of doctors and nurses of Cho Ray Hospital, on January 7 removed a total of 10 kilos of lumps mostly from her forehead, chin, hands, buttocks and around her eyes.

Ly’s surgery is the third consecutive operation that Dr. McKinnon performed in Vietnam.

On January 5 at HCMC-based hospital, a 60-member surgical team led by Dr. McKinnon successfully removed 82-kilo tumor on the right leg of 32-year-old Nguyen Duy Hai, who hails from Da Lat central highlands city.

Hai is recovering well and now can eat and breathe by himself.

Dr. McKay McKinnon and his wife left Vietnam for the US on January 8.

Man arrested, suspected of killing newly-wed wife

Police in Go Vap district, Ho Chi Minh City last week seized Nguyen Duy Thinh (34), who is suspected of burning his wife due to family conflicts in late December.

According to initial information, on the afternoon of December 25, neighbors in the area heard shouts for help from the 4-story house where Thinh and his wife, Pham Huong Thao (31) were living.

People came to help when they saw Thinh run outside and nervously tell everyone that his wife was being burned on the third floor.

At the scene of the accident, witnesses saw Thao crawling to a bathroom and pouring water upon her burned body.

She was taken to hospital 175 with her head seriously burned.

Thinh also received burns on both of his arms.

Five days later, Thao died in the hospital.

During the investigation, police came to suspect that Thinh had waited for an opportunity when his wife was distracted, poured petrol on her body, and burned her.

However, Thinh has denied the accusation, and said Thao was careless and burned herself as she got stuck on the third floor.

After gathering information, the police decided to arrest Thinh for further investigation.

According to the police’s information, Thinh and Thao had just gotten married a few months before and had been living in the house, which was owned by Thinh’s sister, ever since. Neighbors said they often heard the couple arguing.

VNN/VNS/Tuoi Tre

Source Vietnamnet

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