The Catholic lawyer and dissident Le Quoc Quan, imprisoned in northern Vietnam after being sentenced to 30 months, will be judged on appeal on February 8 .
news was reported by his lawyer, following the recent decision by Hanoi's
People's Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, his family was allowed to meet the prisoner,
and described him as being in a "satisfactory" condition.
to his brother Le Quoc Quyet , after the initial sentencing he was held him in
a cell with 24 fellow prisoners, half of them in jail for drugs. He
can only read two newspapers, the official organ of the Communist Party - Nhân Dân - and the newspaper which belongs to police, An Ninh. Other
newspapers, magazines and books, including the Bible for which he asked (in
vain) are forbidden.
Among the most important and
well-known Catholic activists in Vietnam , repeatedly detained and released
after short periods, Le Quoc Quan was detained again by Vietnamese government officials
December 27, 2012 , with false and trumped-up charges of " tax evasion"
act strongly condemned by many pro - human rights associations around the world
of 30 months in prison and a hefty fine (56 thousand dollars) arrived on
October 2, at the end of a lightning trial that lasted a mere two hours.
organizations, groups of Catholic activists and representatives of the main
religions in Vietnam have come to the defense of the dissident, who had fasted
and prayed for a long time ahead of the trial.
In the verdict issued by
the courts, there are no explicit references to his activities as an activist
who is critical of official power and the highest authorities of the state. In
the indictment that there was a reference to the (alleged ) tax fraud committed
by the company in which he worked as a senior executive. And
it is precisely on this charge of tax fraud that the defense wants to focus the
debate on appeal, confident it can prove Le Quoc Quan's innocence regarding the
facts that are ascribed to him.
it is widely believed among human rights activists and associations that the
prison sentence of the Catholic lawyer is in fact due to his battle against the
persecution of followers of religion and strident criticism - on his blog - of
the Communist Party monopoly in Vietnam. During
the trial in the courtroom he rejected the allegations against him as "a
political vendetta " , he then added he would continue its fight against
corruption in the country.
Vietnamese government has been pursuing a campaign against dissidents , bloggers,
religious leaders ( including Buddhists) , Catholic activists or entire
communities as was the case last year in the diocese of Vinh, where media and
government promoted a smear campaign and targeted attacks against the
bishop and faithful. The
repression also affects individuals guilty of claiming the right to religious
freedom and respect for citizens' civil rights.