Vietnam releases French-Vietnamese dissident - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Vietnam releases French-Vietnamese dissident

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) -- Vietnamese authorities have released a French-Vietnamese dissident after he spent 17 months in jail after being convicted of attempting to overthrow the government.

Lawyer Tran Vu Hai said Monday that 56-year-old Pham Minh Hoang was freed from jail Friday and will now serve three years of house arrest. Hoang holds dual citizenship.

Hoang was sentenced to three years in jail after an August trial in which he was found guilty of posting 33 articles criticizing the one-party Communist system, as well as of holding membership in a banned group and recruiting others to join it.

An appeals court in November reduced his sentence to 17 months citing his cooperation with police and his commitment to renounce the banned group.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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