NEWS

Gov’t frees Vietnamese woman accused of killing N Korean leader's half-brother

Reuters

Published
Modified 3 May 2019, 3:07 am

A Vietnamese woman who spent more than two years in a Malaysian prison on suspicion of killing the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was freed on Friday, her lawyer said.

Doan Thi Huong, 30, was charged along with an Indonesian woman with poisoning Kim Jong Nam by smearing his face with liquid VX, a banned chemical weapon, at Kuala Lumpur airport in February 2017.

Malaysian prosecutors dropped a murder charge against Huong last month after she pleaded guilty to an alternate charge of causing harm. Huong will return to Vietnam later on Friday, her lawyer, Hisyam Teh, told Reuters.

Huong was taken into immigration custody immediately after her release from prison and will remain there before boarding a flight to Hanoi, the Vietnamese capital.

Teh said his client may speak at a brief news conference before boarding her flight.

“In the event she is unable to talk to media I will read out a statement from her,” he said.

Huong’s co-accused, Siti Aisyah, was freed in March after prosecutors also dropped a murder charge against her.

South Korean and US officials have said the North Korean regime had ordered the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, who had been critical of his family’s dynastic rule. Pyongyang has denied the allegation.

Defence lawyers have maintained the women were pawns in an assassination orchestrated by North Korean agents. The women said they thought they were part of a reality prank show and did not know they were poisoning Kim.

Four North Korean men were also charged but they left Malaysia hours after the murder and remain at large.

Malaysia came under criticism for charging the two women with murder - which carries a mandatory death penalty in the Southeast Asian country - when the key perpetrators were still being sought.

- Reuters

NEWS

Murder at KLIA2: The brazen attack on Kim Jong Nam

Share this story

Comments

By posting a comment, you agree to our Terms & Conditions as stipulated in full here

TERMS & CONDITIONS

Foul language, profanity, vulgarity, slanderous, personal attack, threatening, sexually-orientated comments or the use of any method of communication that may violate any law or create needless unpleasantness will not be tolerated. Antisocial behaviour such as "spamming" and "trolling" will be suspended. Violators run the risk of also being blocked permanently.

REPORT VIOLATORS

Please use the report feature that is available below each comment to flag offending comments for our moderators to take action. Do not take matters in your own hands to avoid unpleasant and unnecessary exchanges that may result in your own suspension or ban.