VIETNAM: COURT GIVES NIGERIAN DEATH SENTENCE FOR DRUG SMUGGLING
March 23, 2011: A court in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, has sentenced a Nigerian man to death for drug smuggling, state media reported.
Michael Ikenna Nduanya, 34, and his Vietnamese wife, Nguyen Thi Hai Anh, 27, were caught 'illegally transporting drugs,' Cong An newspaper reported.
He is the first foreigner to receive the death penalty this year, according to state media reports.
Nduanya was charged with taking part in a trafficking ring that transported heroin from India, through Cambodia and Vietnam to China.
In December 2009, his wife Anh was caught with 1 kilogram of heroin in her handbag on a bus from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi.
The pair admitted smuggling the drugs four times, for 1,000 dollars each time.
Anh, who gave birth in January while awaiting trial in custody, received a life sentence for her part in the crime. News reports said she had been instructed to carry the drugs.
Under Vietnamese law, the death sentence cannot be applied to pregnant women or women with children under the age of three at the time of crime or the trial. (Sources: DPA, 23/03/2011)