When a patient was supposed to be undergoing rehab treatment in a psychiatric hospital, he was actually hosting parties in his soundproof hospital room, equipped with strobe lights, speakers, DJ tables and copious amounts of music. MDMA, ketamine and methamphetamine.
But that ended when police raided his hospital room in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi last year, seizing the drugs and arresting revelers. On Wednesday, Nguyen Xuan Quy, 39, was sentenced to death along with a second man, Nguyen Van Ngoc, for operating the narcotics ring from the mental institution. Eight other people involved were sentenced to long prison terms.
After being admitted to the psychiatric hospital in 2018, Quy befriended the hospital staff, which gave him lodging privileges that were not afforded to other residents. As of late 2020, her hospital room was a soundproof rave haven, where hospital staff and other residents could enjoy loud music and an assortment of party drugs. Sometimes Quy even brought sex workers to his parties.
He also recruited hospital residents struggling with addiction to help run his drug ring, which also sold to people outside the hospital. By the time they were arrested by police in March last year, it was discovered that Quy and his accomplices had stored, consumed or sold more than 15 kilograms of drugs, including MDMA, ketamine and methamphetamine, just in the hospital. Quy’s room was raided the same day, with police finding five kilograms of various drugs, along with bongs and laptops.
According to local reports, people who arrived at the hospital to buy medicine in Quy often posed as the patients’ caregivers. Quy sometimes sent his accomplices to meet customers outside the hospital, paying them one million Vietnamese dong ($42.60) for each delivery and providing them with free medicine. Other times, Quy would ask shoppers to wait outside the establishment before tossing the drugs out of a room on the second floor.
Vietnam’s execution rates, among the highest in the world, have come under heavy criticism from international rights groups. The death penalty is shrouded in secrecy, with sentences often not made public by the Vietnamese government, but it is estimated that there are more than 1,000 people currently on death row in the country. In addition to drug-related crimes, the death penalty is applied for dozens of offences, including armed robbery, rape and corruption.
“Vietnam’s horrific execution record dwarfs that of any of its neighbors, but it’s no surprise that the government has consistently applied the death penalty and kept executions out of public view,” said Phil Robertson, Human Rights Watch deputy director for Asia. CNN in May.
Besides Quy and Ngoc, four other people were convicted for their involvement in the drug network and sentenced to prison terms ranging from five years to life. Two nurses and a hospital technician were sentenced to five to seven years in prison after telling the court they knew Quy was using and selling drugs at the hospital, but did not tell their bosses .
Do Thi Luu, former head of the hospital department and doctor in Quy, was sentenced to three years in prison for abuse of power. The court heard that she received 10 million Vietnamese dong from Quy every month, a claim she denied.
She told the court she knew Quy had renovated her room, but hadn’t reported it to her bosses because she deemed it “appropriate”. It is unclear whether those in charge of the hospital management were aware of Quy’s drug ring, although reports submitted by the hospital to the Ministry of Health claimed they were completely unaware. .
Last year, after Quy’s holiday was revealed, Vuong Van Tinh, the director of the psychiatric hospital, was fired by the Ministry of Health for negligence. Several hospital executives were also reprimanded for not monitoring the hospital adequately.
Prosecutors say Quy had previously been diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder, although the court said that was not a mitigating factor in his sentencing, considering him to be in stable condition and operating with sufficient autonomy over his actions. during the commission of crimes.
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. men condemned death for having organized parties drugs in hospital psychiatric