10 U.S. Representatives call for Le Quoc Quan’s release
Ten U.S. Members of Congress, led by Representative Ed Royce, call on the government of Vietnam to release Le Quoc Quan, who is scheduled for trial on Wednesday, October 2. An outspoken blogger and human rights lawyer, Le Quoc Quan has vowed to defend himself to the hilt against tax evasion charges that international rights groups contend are part of a politically motivated campaign against peaceful dissent.
Source: Viet Tan
September 25, 2013
His Excellency Truong Tan Sang
President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
c/o Embassy of Vietnam
1233 20th Street N.W., Suite 400
Washington, DC 20036
Dear Mr. President:
We write to express our deep concern over the detention of attorney and human rights advocate Le Quoc Quan.
We understand that Mr. Quan was arrested in December 2012 and charged with tax evasion. It appears that these charges are politically motivated and that the evidence against Mr. Quan was fabricated by authorities.
According to media reports, Mr. Quan was scheduled to be brought to trial in early July. However, on the day before the trial, the People’s Court of Hanoi announced that the presiding judge had fallen ill. As a result, Mr. Quan has been held without trial to this day. We understand that Mr. Quan has been denied visits from his family during his detention.
From 2006 to 2007, Mr. Quan served as a Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy, a program funded by the United States Congress. Through his work in Vietnam and his service in this program, Mr. Quan embodies the importance of protecting and promoting human rights—which you, yourself, emphasized in a joint statement with President Obama during your recent visit to Washington.
We are also concerned that Mr. Quan’s case is not an isolated example of politically motivated prosecution of human rights advocates in Vietnam. In the spirit of the candid and open dialogue called for by your statement with President Obama, we urge you to release Mr. Quan and all other political prisoners and to stop arresting and detaining citizens in retaliation for their peaceful expression and advocacy.