Ninh Thuan (VNA) – The Investigation Police Agency of Phan Rang-Thap Cham city in the south central province of Ninh Thuan announced on July 13 that it will prosecute four people for disturbing public order in protests against a draft bill on special administrative-economic zones.

The defendants include Nguyen Huu Thanh, 27; Nguyen Thi Luong, 47; Nguyen Doan Phuoc My, 16; and Truong Thanh Kiet, 16, all residing in Phan Rang-Thap Cham city.

Thanh has been taken into custody while the other three have been granted bail and prohibited to leave their residences.

According to the police, they were amongst the group gathered on the evening of June 10, driving through the city’s streets and making noise. They also provoked others to assault on-duty police and block the national highway 1A, causing a long traffic jam.

Despite authorities repeatedly telling them to dissemble, they continued conducting their acts of protest.

On July 12, the People’s Court of the neighbouring province of Binh Thuan held a first-instance hearing against seven defendants for the charge of public disturbance in front of the headquarters of the provincial People’s Committee on June 11, also in protest against the now-postponed draft law.

According to the indictment, Nguyen Van Hung (born in 1992); Nguyen Van Manh, (1994); Nguyen Van Minh (1966); Nguyen Phuong Dong (1994); Nguyen Dinh Vu (1977); Nguyen Minh Hai (2001); and Tran Thi Ngoc (1968), gathered in front of the building and threw stones and petrol bombs at police officers.

The defendants were charged with “disturbing public order” by using weapons and assaulting the person who intervenes to maintain public order, as stipulated in the 2015 Penal Code.

The jury sentenced Manh, Hung, Dong, and Minh to 30 months in prison each, while Vu and Ngoc each received a 24 month jail penalty. Hai was granted an 18 month suspended sentence as he was still a minor when committing the offence.-VNA