Vietnamese tycoon and internet celebrity arrested for ‘abusing democratic freedoms’

Vietnamese tycoon and internet celebrity arrested for 'abusing democratic freedoms'

Nguyen Phuong Hang at a police station in HCMC. Photo courtesy of the police


A Vietnamese businesswoman who became an internet sensation after criticizing multiple celebrities in Facebook livestream videos was arrested Thursday night on accusations of “abusing democratic freedoms.”

Nguyen Phuong Hang, 51, general director of the Dai Nam Joint Stock Company in southern Binh Duong Province, was arrested by Ho Chi Minh City police pending investigation for “abusing democratic freedoms to infringe upon the interests of the State, lawful rights and interests of organizations and/or citizens.”

Last month, Hang was temporarily banned from leaving the country until the end of April following multiple accusations of slander and insults.

Among those who accused her of slander was Nguyen Duc Hien, deputy chief editor of Vietnamese newspaper Phap luat TP HCM (HCMC Law).

Last year, in an interview she gave to another newspaper, Hang was asked about “inappropriate comments” she’d made on social media. Hang fired back with multiple livestreams on Facebook, YouTube and TikTok, expressing her anger at Hien.

Hang, born Nguyen Thi Thanh Tuyen, is known for being ostentatious, not hesitant to flaunt about her riches. She and her husband, Huynh Uy Dung, former general director of the Dai Nam company, are both famous for their lavish lifestyles and philanthropy.

Starting a year ago, she stormed the online community with a live-streamed, most watched expose of several celebrities on her Facebook page. The hours-long videos attracted hundreds of thousands of views each, some of which criticized celebrities for being not transparent about charity money collected from other people.

Police investigation into her accusations have found no violations yet.

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