Vietnam judge faces jail for wrongful conviction
02 October 2014, 12:10
Hanoi - A retired judge in Vietnam could face up to 12 years in jail after a man sentenced to life in prison for murder was later found to be innocent, authorities said on Thursday.
Former judge Pham Tuan Chiem, aged 65, was charged with "lacking responsibility and causing serious consequences", and is being held under house arrest, Nguyen Viet Hung, a spokesperson for the Supreme People's Procuracy told dpa.
Chiem upheld the sentence of farmer Nguyen Thanh Chan, aged 53, in 2004 after he was convicted by a local court of murdering and robbing a local woman in Bac Giang Province.
Chan was released in 2013 after another man confessed to the crime.
He said at the trial he had been tortured during the course of the police investigation and was forced to write a confession.
Prosecutors said Chiem's failure to review the relevant documents and repeated violations of judicial procedures led to the wrongful conviction.
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Chan has asked for nearly $500 000 in compensation, spokesperson Hung said.
Three other officials, including a police officer and former prosecutor, have also been charged with negligence over the case.
In Vietnam murder trials are held by local courts but are referred to the Supreme Court if the defendant decides to appeal.