Kim Jong Nam case: Vietnamese suspect worries about father's safety, says cousin

Second court mention for the two women charged with Kim Jong Nam's murder at Sepang Magistrate Court.
Second court mention for the two women charged with Kim Jong Nam's murder at Sepang Magistrate Court.ST PHOTO: TRINNA LEONG

KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Vietnamese national Doan Thi Huong, one of the two accused in the Kim Jong Nam murder trial, is more worried about her father's safety than her own, according to her cousin.

Tran Huy Hoang, 23, said Doan met her father for more than an hour at the Kajang prison on Wednesday (April 12), and expressed concern for his safety.

Her cousin and her father Doan Van Thanh are in Malaysia after a Vietnam-based NGO offered to sponsor their travel expenses. They arrived here on Monday.

"Her father is happy he can see her and she is doing better," said Tran.

Vietnamese national Doan Thi Huong (left) being escorted after a court appearance on March 1, 2017. PHOTO:AFP

"She is not sad anymore, but she is pretty worried about the safety of her father here.

"She has asked the Vietnam embassy to prepare a place for him to stay at the embassy and keep him safe until he returns to Vietnam," Tran told journalists on Wednesday.


Doan, 29, had also reportedly asked her father not to be present at the Sepang court house on Thursday and to remain at the embassy for his own safety.

"Doan asked her father to remain at the embassy," said her cousin.

He said he would not be allowed into the courtroom because he is not an immediate family member.

Doan is to be produced together with Indonesian Siti Aisyah, 25, at the Sepang magistrate's court on Thursday, where the case is expected to be transferred to the Shah Alam High Court.

On March 1, the pair were charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murdering Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Tran also revealed that Doan's father had met with criminal defence lawyer Hisham Teh Poh Teik, who has been appointed as her new lawyer with the help of the Vietnamese NGO.

The other lawyer believed to be representing Doan is Naran Singh.

Tran said Doan's family in Vietnam was shocked about the fate that has befallen her as she was "a very good girl".

"The whole family and the Vietnamese people know that Huong (Doan) is innocent because she is a very good girl.

"We are also sad because the real criminals have run away," he said when asked about the North Korean suspects who had gone back to their country immediately after the murder.

Tran also revealed that the family could not come to Malaysia sooner as they did not have the financial means to do so.

According to him, Doan's father works as a janitor, while her mother died last year from a heart disease. She also has three siblings back home.

Both her cousin and father are expected to return home this Saturday.

Doan was arrested on Feb 15 as she was attempting to catch a flight back to Vietnam.