English World

Vietnamese doesn’t want father to be in court for Jong-nam murder trial

KUALA LUMPUR: Vietnamese national Doan Thi Huong, who has been charged with the murder of Kim Jong-nam, is more worried about her father’s safety than her own, according to her cousin.

Tran Huy Hoang, 23, said Huong met her father for more than an hour at Kajang Prison yesterday morning and expressed concern for his safety.

Her father, Doan Van Thanh, and Hoang arrived here on Monday after a Vietnam-based NGO sponsored their travel expenses.

“Her father was happy to meet her and see that she is doing better.

“She is not sad anymore, but she is worried about his safety here,” Hoang told journalists.

“She has asked the Vietnam embassy to prepare a place here for him to stay and keep him safe until he returns home.”

Huong, 29, also reportedly asked her father not to be present at the Sepang courthouse today and to stay at the embassy for his own safety.

“We can go to court tomorrow but after this morning’s meeting, Huong asked her father to remain at the embassy. So, he might not go to court,” said Hoang.

Huong is to be brought together with Indonesian Siti Aisyah, 25, to the Sepang magistrate’s court today, and the case is expected to be transferred to the Shah Alam High Court.

On March 1, they were both charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code with murdering Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.

Hoang also revealed that Thanh had met with criminal defence lawyer Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, who was appointed as Huong’s new lawyer with the help of the Vietnamese NGO.

The other lawyer believed to be representing her is Naran Singh.

Hoang said Huong’s family members back in Vietnam were shocked by her situation as she was “a very good girl”.

He added that the family was sad that the North Korean suspects, who are believed to have returned to their country, “have run away”.

Huong’s father works as a janitor, while her mother died last year from a heart disease. She has three siblings.

Both her father and cousin are expected to return home on Satur­day.

Jong-nam was killed at KLIA2 on Feb 13 while waiting to board a flight to Macau.

The two women are alleged to have sprayed him with a chemical that has since been identified as the deadly VX nerve agent.

Huong was arrested on Feb 15 as she was attempting to catch a flight back to Vietnam, while Siti Aisyah was detained early the next day.-thestar

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