Appeal launched against lenient kingpin sentence

HOT: A breakthrough! The Vietnamese legal system, acting upon ENV’s recommendations, is to appeal the sentence in the recent Nguyen Mau Chien rhino horn smuggling case.

In March, Mau Chien received an extremely lenient 13-month prison sentence and a token fine of 10 million VND fine ($442). Since then we have persistently argued for the Vietnamese legal system to appeal and have this travesty of a sentence overturned.

Our persistence has paid off. The appeal trial must now take place within two months. In the meantime, we will continue advocating for a much stiffer sentence for Mau Chien, one that reflects the seriousness of his crimes.

He was convicted at a court in Hanoi in March on charges of possessing and trafficking prohibited products including more than 34kg of rhino horn and two dead tiger cubs. Due to backdating of the sentence, Mau Chien, who has been identified as a major illegal wildlife kingpin, is now a free man again.

Find out more about the background to this case in our explainer video:

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