Five Vietnamese fishing boat crew members who had been detained in Tanzania since March 2009 left the country for their homeland on July 21.

They included Tran Van Phuong, Pham Dinh Suong, Tran Van Thanh, Cao Vuong and Nguyen Tuan from the central provinces of Nghe An, Ha Tinh and Quang Binh.

They were employed as fishermen with Taiwanese employers under labour contracts with the Tourist, Trade and Labour Export JSC (TTLC) of the Vietnam Motors Industry Corporation (VINAMOTOR).

After they were arrested, the Vietnamese Embassy in Tanzania promptly implemented citizen protection measures, actively coordinating with concerned agencies both at home and abroad to ensure the crew members’ safety and to seek acquittal for them.

The embassy helped the crew members deal with difficulties in their daily lives, provided them with health care and completed procedures to bring them home.

The Vietnamese crew members were scheduled to arrive in Vietnam on July 22.

The five Vietnamese and another 26 crew members from China , Indonesia , the Philippines and Kenya were set free by the Tanzanian Supreme Court on July 14.

They were arrested for alleged illegal fishing on March 8, 2009 while they were on the Taiwanese fishing vessel, Tawariq 1.

Of the acquitted crew members, one Kenyan died in prison.

Five other Chinese members of the vessel, comprising captain, engineers and agents, were still being detained in prison after the court put them on their defense./.