Houston Matters

Houstonian Arrested In Vietnam And Is Being Held For Disturbing Public Order

We learn more about a Houstonian who is preparing for trial in Vietnam this week. William Nguyen is a U.S. citizen who faces a criminal charge there after participating in protests. Houston Matters host Craig Cohen talks with California Congressman Alan Lowenthal as he lays out what’s at stake for the Houston native.

Vietnamese protesters against a proposal to grant companies lengthy land leases during a demonstration in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, June 10, 2018.


Lawmakers in Washington are closely watching the upcoming trial of a Houston man in Vietnam. William Nguyen, 32, a Houston native and a proud Vietnamese-American, was arrested while taking a break from his studies at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy in Singapore. He visited Vietnam as his family did annually for years.

While there, Nguyen joined a protests in Ho Chi Minh City, protesting that government's plans to establish special economic zones. He is charged with disrupting public space and allegedly encouraging other protesters to overrun police barricades.

His trial is set to begin on Friday (July 20) in Vietnam. Houston Matters host Craig Cohen talks with California Congressman Alan Lowenthal, who co-chairs the Congressional caucus on Vietnam and represents one of the largest Vietnamese-American communities in the country. He has been in touch with the U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam, Dan Kritenbrink, and his office says they're closely watching this trial on Friday.


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