Global

Kim Jong-nam: Vietnamese woman freed in murder case

Kim Jong-nam: Vietnamese woman freed in murder case

The release of a Vietnamese woman from a Malaysian jail has effectively closed the case on who orchestrated the murder of Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of North Korea's leader. More than two years after her arrest, the 30-year-old former hair salon worker was freed from prison outside the Malaysian capital at about 7:20 am (2320 GMT Thursday), her lawyer Hisyam Teh Poh Teik told AFP.

The women's lawyers presented them as scapegoats and said the real masterminds were four North Koreans accused alongside them, who fled Malaysia shortly after the murder.

In March, Malaysian prosecutors withdrew the murder charge against Siti Aisyah before releasing her. Huong's application to have her murder charge dropped was rejected by the attorney-general.

A month after Siti was released, Huong pleaded guilty for a smaller charge related to "causing hurt by a unsafe weapon". She pleaded guilty last month to a reduced charge of causing injury and was sentenced to 40 months in prison from the day of her arrest, February 15, 2017.

The four men - Ri Ji Hyon, Ri Jae Nam, Hong Song Hac and O Jong Gil - fled Malaysia within hours of the incident and are believed to have returned to North Korea.

Her release looks likely to close the case as four North Koreans named as co-conspirators in the 2017 murder are not in custody.

Hisyam said he and two other defense lawyers would be on the same flight as Huong because they will give a final briefing on the case to the Vietnam Bar Federation, which had hired them.

More news: Sri Lanka bans burqas for 'public protection' after bomb attacks

Aisyah was freed in March and returned to Indonesia when prosecution made a decision to drop charges. Her lawyer has said that Huong has not been able to sleep since the unexpected release of Siti. They allegedly got the two women to smear Kim Jong-nam with VX at a terminal of the Kuala Lumpur airport, leading to his death within minutes.

A few steps away from a Starbucks cafe and a Puffy Buffy Malaysian food stall, a woman stood in front of Kim to distract him.

Huong has come home with a criminal record, so if she breaks the law in Vietnam, she would be considered a repeat offender, said Do Ngoc Thinh, chairman of the Vietnam Bar Federation.

The murder had triggered a diplomatic row between Malaysia and North Korea.

A Vietnamese woman who stood trial for the assassination of the North Korean leader's half-brother arrived home Friday, bringing down the curtain on a dramatic and often freaky 2-year murder mystery.

Naran added that the North Korean government was on good terms with Vietnam, referring to a summit in February between Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump that was hosted by Hanoi.

Both of the woman thought they were part of a prank.


  • Rodgers hails Sterling's ambition to be the best

    Rodgers hails Sterling's ambition to be the best

    He's taken his game to a level where he's clearly one of the best players in the world. "He's not even near his peak yet". His style of play seems a good fit at Leicester, with striker Jamie Vardy scoring nine goals under Rodgers already.
    Cyclone Fani hits India

    Cyclone Fani hits India

    Over roughly half a century, 23, or almost 60 percent of the cyclones , to hit India were observed between October and December. Kolkata still reels with the terrible memories of cyclone , "Aila" which wreaked havoc in Sundarbans about 10 years back.
    Gold falls to one-week low after Fed dashes rate cut hopes

    Gold falls to one-week low after Fed dashes rate cut hopes

    Trump called on the Fed to cut rates by 1 percentage point and to resume its crisis-era bond-buying program to stimulate growth. The economy expanded at a 3.2 per cent annualized pace from January to March , boosted by exports and inventories growth.
  • Why The Milwaukee Bucks Are The Best Team Left In The Playoffs

    Why The Milwaukee Bucks Are The Best Team Left In The Playoffs

    For the last eight minutes of the third quarter, the Bucks were in the bonus, which led to Milwaukee taking control of the game. Games 3 and 4 are in Boston, where the Celtics are 12-1 over the past two postseasons.
    Fines, jail time? Trump team resists oversight, Dems dig in

    Fines, jail time? Trump team resists oversight, Dems dig in

    Democrats refused to accommodate Barr because Raskin said there's a bigger constitutional principle at stake. Now we have Graham offering Mueller a chance to finally set the record straight about Barr's summary.
    Google Pixel 3a launch confirmed

    Google Pixel 3a launch confirmed

    At first, the devices were called Pixel 3 Lite and Pixel 3 XL Lite, but their actual names are Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL . It is also said that the phones would come with rear fingerprint sensors and run Android 9 Pie out-of-the-box.
  • Donald Trump to present Tiger Woods with Presidential Medal of Freedom

    Donald Trump to present Tiger Woods with Presidential Medal of Freedom

    Kendall Alley, the regional president for Wells Fargo, said the tour recommended TPC Potomac and officials liked what they saw. Masters golf champion Tiger Woods could have "10 years left" as a competitive player, says Rory McIlroy .
    Trump, Democrats cross swords over powers as 2020 election looms

    Trump, Democrats cross swords over powers as 2020 election looms

    Meanwhile, the White House has refused to let some members of the Trump administration comply with requests from House Democrats to testify.
    Kentucky Derby favorite ruled out of race

    Kentucky Derby favorite ruled out of race

    McLaughlin said if Haikal can't train on Friday morning, he'd take the colt out of the race. Trainer Richard Mandella said the ailment would sideline Omaha Beach for about three weeks.
  • Tom Steyer, proponent of impeaching Trump, pushes campaign to disbar attorney general

    Tom Steyer, proponent of impeaching Trump, pushes campaign to disbar attorney general

    Nadler has issued a subpoena for McGahn to testify in its investigation of possible obstruction of justice by the president. But the letter Mueller wrote Barr in March proves Mueller wasn't happy with Barr's statements about his report.
    D'Angelo Russell Cited for Marijuana Possession at LaGuardia Airport in NYC

    D'Angelo Russell Cited for Marijuana Possession at LaGuardia Airport in NYC

    If Russell pleads guilty or is convicted of marijuana possession, he would be asked to enter a substance abuse program. In a statement, the Nets said they were aware of the situation and gathering more information.
    Dems threaten Barr anew with contempt over Mueller report

    Dems threaten Barr anew with contempt over Mueller report

    Mueller did not conclude that President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice, but did not exonerate him either. Kerri Kupec, a Justice Department representative, called Pelosi's statement "reckless, irresponsible and false".