Nguyen Van Hai

Vietnamese blogger and former prisoner of conscience jailed for “conducting propaganda” against the state

Asia-Pacific and South Asia

Nguyen Van Hai, also known by his pen name Điếu Cày (Peasant’s Pipe), is a Vietnamese blogger and activist. After helping co-found the unsanctioned FreeJournalists Club of Vietnam in 2008, the government arrested him on trumped up charges of tax evasion and seized his computer and personal files. He was due to be released in 2010, but instead he was held in detention while the government brought new charges against him for alleged “anti-state activities”connected to his journalism. In 2012, he was sentenced to an additional 12 years in prison. Amid mounting pressure from international rights groups and foreign governments, he was freed in 2014, and received asylum in the United States.

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