2012-08-01 19:38:53

Vietnamese Pastor Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison

 Pastor Nguyen Cong Chinh was sentenced to 11 years in prison by the Gia Lai provincial court in a rushed trial where there was no defense counsel. After this trial he plans to appeal.

Pastor Nguyen Cong Chinh, 43, was accused of "undermining national unity policy" under Article 87 of the Criminal Law.

Communist authorities have strict control of society and all activities of the church must be approved by the state.

During the preliminary hearing in March, 2012, the pastor said in court that, “guilty only to God but no crime against the state."

During from 2003 to date was arrested April 28, 2011, Pastor Nguyen Cong Chinh and his family lived in constant terror of the police.

He had to change the church and at least three times before finally incarcerated as the leader of Fellowship Lutheran Church-United States Vietnam.

The pastor's Protestant denomination is not accepted in the state system of religion, and the pastor was accused by the government as "hiding under the guise of religion." The Hoa Hao Buddhism is also iillegal relgion in Hanoi's eyes.

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