Profile

Nguyen Van Duc Do

Current Status: Sentenced to prison

Photo of Nguyen Van Duc Do

Other Names: Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ

Date of Birth: September 10, 1975

Gender: M

Ethnicity: Kinh

Occupation: Engineer

Last Known Prison: Xuan Loc prison, Dong Nai province

Highlighted Human Rights Concerns:

  • Torture
  • Solitary Confinement
  • Denial of Adequate Medical Treatment or Supplies
  • Harsh Physical and Administrative Conditions
  • Infliction of Physical and Psychological Pain

May 2023:

Nguyen Van Duc Do, a political prisoner serving an 11-year sentence, has accused his jailers at Z30A Prison in Xuan Loc of trying to poison him with water contaminated with pesticide, which he bought at the prison canteen.

March 2021:

Prison guards released a dog on political prisoner Nguyen Van Duc Do to keep him quiet. He has been held in solitary confinement without access to fresh air and exercise, causing his health to deteriorate. He was experiencing chest pain and had difficulty breathing when he tried to call for help by banging on his cell door. Instead of helping him, the guards brought out the dog, according to Duc’s brother. Fortunately, the dog did not attack Duc.

***

Amnesty International is calling for immediate cessation of mistreatment of Nguyen Van Duc Do, who is serving an 11-year sentence for his peaceful activism: “Amnesty International has received alarming reports that Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ has been kept in solitary confinement since May 2020, having been sent there after he complained to authorities of the harsh living conditions in the prison. According to reliable information received by the organization, at the time of his initial placement in solitary confinement, prison authorities chained Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ’s legs for 10 consecutive days. During this period, prison guards are reported to have fed him food mixed with human excrement and dirty water, which made him sick with food poisoning. He is also understood to have suffered injuries to his legs, which were cut and became swollen and infected from the shackles he was held in.”

Details

Immediate Concerns

May 2023:

Nguyen Van Duc Do, a political prisoner serving an 11-year sentence, has accused his jailers at Z30A Prison in Xuan Loc of trying to poison him with water contaminated with pesticide, which he bought at the prison canteen.

March 2021:

Prison guards released a dog on political prisoner Nguyen Van Duc Do to keep him quiet. He has been held in solitary confinement without access to fresh air and exercise, causing his health to deteriorate. He was experiencing chest pain and had difficulty breathing when he tried to call for help by banging on his cell door. Instead of helping him, the guards brought out the dog, according to Duc’s brother. Fortunately, the dog did not attack Duc.

***

Amnesty International is calling for immediate cessation of mistreatment of Nguyen Van Duc Do, who is serving an 11-year sentence for his peaceful activism: “Amnesty International has received alarming reports that Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ has been kept in solitary confinement since May 2020, having been sent there after he complained to authorities of the harsh living conditions in the prison. According to reliable information received by the organization, at the time of his initial placement in solitary confinement, prison authorities chained Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ’s legs for 10 consecutive days. During this period, prison guards are reported to have fed him food mixed with human excrement and dirty water, which made him sick with food poisoning. He is also understood to have suffered injuries to his legs, which were cut and became swollen and infected from the shackles he was held in.”

Background

Nguyen Van Duc Do is an appliance repairer who lives in Ho Chi Minh City. He is friends with political prisoner Luu Van Vinh and was arrested after visiting Vinh at his home. 

Sentenced to 11 years in prison under Art. 117 (2015 Code), Art. 79 (1999 Code). Expected Release is November 6, 2027.

November 6, 2016
  • Art. 117 (2015 Code)
  • Art. 79 (1999 Code)
Viet Nam
October 5, 2018
Dang Dinh Manh
11 years in prison
November 6, 2027
  • Human Rights Watch
  • Amnesty International
Details of Imprisonment

Do was arrested on November 6, 2016, while visiting Luu Van Vinh, founder of the Coalition for Self-determined Vietnamese People, who was also arrested, though he claimed that he had left the organization. Do was arrested for alleged ties to the group, which he denies, stating his only involvement is that of having a friendship with Vinh. Authorities recommended Do be prosecuted under Article 79. Do maintains his innoncence and that he has not participated in any anti-state activities. 

December 2017:

Authorities ended their initial investigation of Nguyen Van Duc Do, an electrician from Ho Chi Minh City.

October 2018:

Luu Van Vinh was sentenced to 15 years in prison on October 5. His co-defendants were also sentenced to prison terms: Nguyen Quoc Hoan, 13 years; Nguyen Van Duc Do, 11 years; Tu Cong Nghia, 10 years; and Phan Van Trung, 8 years. The five had been detained since November 2016, and all were charged under Article 79 of the 1999 Criminal Code for subversion. Vinh founded a group called the Coalition for Self-Determination for the Vietnamese People, which he had left a few days before his arrest; others were implicated as allegedly belonging to the group, which called for political change in Vietnam.

Facebooker Nhi Nguyen and her husband, Pham Ngoc An, were arrested at 7:30 AM when they came to attend the trial in support of their uncle, Nguyen Van Duc Do.

November 2018:

On November 15, Nguyen Van Duc Do’s family went to Chi Hoa Detention Center to visit and bring him some food. Do revealed that on November 15, he was beaten by three prisoners. Do kicked the cell door and asked officials to transfer him to another cell. However, they did not take action and just told him to be quiet. As soon as the officials left, Do was beaten again to the point of unconsciousness. When he woke up, he was in the medical room of the detention center with many bruises and swelling over his face and body. On November 16, Do sent his brother a letter, calling for people and organizations to intervene on his behalf and save his life. His fellow prisoner and co-defendant, Luu Van Vinh, said he believes that the prisoners who beat Do acted with permission from prison officials.

January 2019:

At 9:00 am on January 21, the appeal trial against Luu Van Vinh (sentenced to 15 years) and his co-defendants Nguyen Quoc Hoan (13 years), Nguyen Van Duc Do (11 years), Tu Cong Nghia (10 years), and Phan Van Trung (also known as Thich Nhat Hue, 8 years) began. But since one defense counsel, who was appointed by the authorities for Phan Trung, did not show up, the trial was postponed. A new date was not immediately announced. 

March 2019:

On March 18, five activists faced their appeal trial at the Higher People’s Court in Ho Chi Minh City. They are Luu Van Vinh (sentenced to 15 years) and his co-defendants Nguyen Quoc Hoan (13 years), Nguyen Van Duc Do (11 years), Tu Cong Nghia (10 years), and Phan Van Trung (also known as Thich Nhat Hue, 8 years). All five prisoners' sentences were upheld on appeal. The five maintained their innocence and protested the Court's decision. Only Vinh's wife was allowed inside the courtroom. The trial was originally set for January 21, 2019, but since one defense counsel, who was appointed by the authorities for Phan Trung, did not show up, the trial was postponed. 

Nguyen Van Duc Do is reportedly in poor health in prison and has been subjected to beatings when arrested and also while imprisoned. 

October 2019:

In Xuan Loc camp, Nguyen Van Duc Do was on hunger strike. On October 18, his family visited him in prison and learned about the ongoing incident. Do was protesting against the restrictive supply policy in prison. Prisoners are only allowed to receive five kilograms of supply from their family, and often have to purchase extra food from the prison's canteen at a price that is four or five times higher than the market price, so they are always short of what they need. 

July 2020:

Nguyen Van Duc Do’s family has filed a petition against the notorious Xuan Loc Prison in Dong Nai Province after Do was tortured in prison for asking for time outside in the sun on weekends. His family alleges he was beaten, placed in solitary confinement, and fed human waste along with his food. The family was also calling for access to medical care. 

Physical Health History

Both Do and Luu Van Vinh were beaten when arrested. 

Actions Taken

November 2016:

Amnesty International released an Urgent Action regarding Do's "risk of torture and other ill treatment" while detained. 

October 2018:

“Thirteen people have been placed behind bars in the past five weeks for ‘crimes’ such as blogging, using Facebook and other peaceful pursuits," Amnesty International said in response to the October 5 trial. Human Rights Watch called for the release of the five co-defendants as well. 

March 2019:

Human Rights Watch called for the release of Do and his co-defendants, as well as activsit Le Minh The (who was facing his first-instance hearing during the same week), saying that "[i]nternational donors and trade partners should tell Vietnam that continuing this crackdown will cause problems for the aid and trade deals that Hanoi wants to conclude with North America and the European Union.”

March 2021:

Amnesty International was calling for immediate cessation of mistreatment of Nguyen Van Duc Do: “Amnesty International has received alarming reports that Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ has been kept in solitary confinement since May 2020, having been sent there after he complained to authorities of the harsh living conditions in the prison. According to reliable information received by the organization, at the time of his initial placement in solitary confinement, prison authorities chained Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ’s legs for 10 consecutive days. During this period, prison guards are reported to have fed him food mixed with human excrement and dirty water, which made him sick with food poisoning. He is also understood to have suffered injuries to his legs, which were cut and became swollen and infected from the shackles he was held in.”

Resources

Vietnam: 6 Activists Headed to Prison, Human Rights Watch, March 14, 2019

Human Rights Watch Calls For Immediate Release of Six Jailed Vietnamese Activists, Radio Free Asia, March 15, 2019

Five Vietnamese Activists Shout Down Judge After Subversion Appeals Rejected, Radio Free Asia, March 18, 2019

Family Files Petition For Vietnamese Political Prisoner Who Was Tortured, Fed Feces, Radio Free Asia, June 30, 2020

Authorities Sic ‘Hunting Dog’ on Vietnamese Political Prisoner in Tiny Cell, Radio Free Asia, March 18, 2021

VIET NAM: ACTIVIST TORTURED, HELD IN SOLITARY CONFINEMENT FOR OVER 300 DAYS, Amnesty International, March 23, 2021

October 5, 2018: trial

October 5, 2018
(map)

  • Human Rights Watch
  • Amnesty International
Details of Imprisonment

Do was arrested on November 6, 2016, while visiting Luu Van Vinh, founder of the Coalition for Self-determined Vietnamese People, who was also arrested, though he claimed that he had left the organization. Do was arrested for alleged ties to the group, which he denies, stating his only involvement is that of having a friendship with Vinh. Authorities recommended Do be prosecuted under Article 79. Do maintains his innoncence and that he has not participated in any anti-state activities. 

December 2017:

Authorities ended their initial investigation of Nguyen Van Duc Do, an electrician from Ho Chi Minh City.

October 2018:

Luu Van Vinh was sentenced to 15 years in prison on October 5. His co-defendants were also sentenced to prison terms: Nguyen Quoc Hoan, 13 years; Nguyen Van Duc Do, 11 years; Tu Cong Nghia, 10 years; and Phan Van Trung, 8 years. The five had been detained since November 2016, and all were charged under Article 79 of the 1999 Criminal Code for subversion. Vinh founded a group called the Coalition for Self-Determination for the Vietnamese People, which he had left a few days before his arrest; others were implicated as allegedly belonging to the group, which called for political change in Vietnam.

Facebooker Nhi Nguyen and her husband, Pham Ngoc An, were arrested at 7:30 AM when they came to attend the trial in support of their uncle, Nguyen Van Duc Do.

November 2018:

On November 15, Nguyen Van Duc Do’s family went to Chi Hoa Detention Center to visit and bring him some food. Do revealed that on November 15, he was beaten by three prisoners. Do kicked the cell door and asked officials to transfer him to another cell. However, they did not take action and just told him to be quiet. As soon as the officials left, Do was beaten again to the point of unconsciousness. When he woke up, he was in the medical room of the detention center with many bruises and swelling over his face and body. On November 16, Do sent his brother a letter, calling for people and organizations to intervene on his behalf and save his life. His fellow prisoner and co-defendant, Luu Van Vinh, said he believes that the prisoners who beat Do acted with permission from prison officials.

January 2019:

At 9:00 am on January 21, the appeal trial against Luu Van Vinh (sentenced to 15 years) and his co-defendants Nguyen Quoc Hoan (13 years), Nguyen Van Duc Do (11 years), Tu Cong Nghia (10 years), and Phan Van Trung (also known as Thich Nhat Hue, 8 years) began. But since one defense counsel, who was appointed by the authorities for Phan Trung, did not show up, the trial was postponed. A new date was not immediately announced. 

March 2019:

On March 18, five activists faced their appeal trial at the Higher People’s Court in Ho Chi Minh City. They are Luu Van Vinh (sentenced to 15 years) and his co-defendants Nguyen Quoc Hoan (13 years), Nguyen Van Duc Do (11 years), Tu Cong Nghia (10 years), and Phan Van Trung (also known as Thich Nhat Hue, 8 years). All five prisoners' sentences were upheld on appeal. The five maintained their innocence and protested the Court's decision. Only Vinh's wife was allowed inside the courtroom. The trial was originally set for January 21, 2019, but since one defense counsel, who was appointed by the authorities for Phan Trung, did not show up, the trial was postponed. 

Nguyen Van Duc Do is reportedly in poor health in prison and has been subjected to beatings when arrested and also while imprisoned. 

October 2019:

In Xuan Loc camp, Nguyen Van Duc Do was on hunger strike. On October 18, his family visited him in prison and learned about the ongoing incident. Do was protesting against the restrictive supply policy in prison. Prisoners are only allowed to receive five kilograms of supply from their family, and often have to purchase extra food from the prison's canteen at a price that is four or five times higher than the market price, so they are always short of what they need. 

July 2020:

Nguyen Van Duc Do’s family has filed a petition against the notorious Xuan Loc Prison in Dong Nai Province after Do was tortured in prison for asking for time outside in the sun on weekends. His family alleges he was beaten, placed in solitary confinement, and fed human waste along with his food. The family was also calling for access to medical care. 

Physical Health History

Both Do and Luu Van Vinh were beaten when arrested. 

Actions Taken

November 2016:

Amnesty International released an Urgent Action regarding Do's "risk of torture and other ill treatment" while detained. 

October 2018:

“Thirteen people have been placed behind bars in the past five weeks for ‘crimes’ such as blogging, using Facebook and other peaceful pursuits," Amnesty International said in response to the October 5 trial. Human Rights Watch called for the release of the five co-defendants as well. 

March 2019:

Human Rights Watch called for the release of Do and his co-defendants, as well as activsit Le Minh The (who was facing his first-instance hearing during the same week), saying that "[i]nternational donors and trade partners should tell Vietnam that continuing this crackdown will cause problems for the aid and trade deals that Hanoi wants to conclude with North America and the European Union.”

March 2021:

Amnesty International was calling for immediate cessation of mistreatment of Nguyen Van Duc Do: “Amnesty International has received alarming reports that Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ has been kept in solitary confinement since May 2020, having been sent there after he complained to authorities of the harsh living conditions in the prison. According to reliable information received by the organization, at the time of his initial placement in solitary confinement, prison authorities chained Nguyễn Văn Đức Độ’s legs for 10 consecutive days. During this period, prison guards are reported to have fed him food mixed with human excrement and dirty water, which made him sick with food poisoning. He is also understood to have suffered injuries to his legs, which were cut and became swollen and infected from the shackles he was held in.”

Resources

Vietnam: 6 Activists Headed to Prison, Human Rights Watch, March 14, 2019

Human Rights Watch Calls For Immediate Release of Six Jailed Vietnamese Activists, Radio Free Asia, March 15, 2019

Five Vietnamese Activists Shout Down Judge After Subversion Appeals Rejected, Radio Free Asia, March 18, 2019

Family Files Petition For Vietnamese Political Prisoner Who Was Tortured, Fed Feces, Radio Free Asia, June 30, 2020

Authorities Sic ‘Hunting Dog’ on Vietnamese Political Prisoner in Tiny Cell, Radio Free Asia, March 18, 2021

VIET NAM: ACTIVIST TORTURED, HELD IN SOLITARY CONFINEMENT FOR OVER 300 DAYS, Amnesty International, March 23, 2021

Profile last updated: 2024-06-13 20:34:03

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