KUALA LUMPUR, April 12 ― The family of Doan Thi Huong, the 29-year-old Vietnamese woman accused of killing Kim Jong-nam, believes she is a "good girl" and is innocent of the crime.
In the first news conference by her family in Malaysia, Huong’s cousin Tran Huy Hoang related their family’s shock and struggle to understand the murder charge levelled against her and another woman, 25-year-old Indonesian Siti Aisyah.
The two women were charged with killing the elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on February 13 by wiping his face with the deadly nerve agent VX, a crime punishable with death in Malaysia.
“Whole family and Vietnamese people know that Huong is innocent because she is a very good girl. We expect she is innocent and [we want] Malaysia know about that,” the 23-year-old Tran told reporters.
He had arrived in Malaysia on Monday with Huong’s father Doan Van Thanh who was also supposed to attend the news conference but was advised by the Vietnamese embassy to abstain for security reasons.
Tran shared that father and daughter were able to meet at the Kajang Prison for an hour this morning.
“Family very shocked about the information. That’s why the family convinced father to come here and check if she’s good or not.
“But after this morning, he is very happy to see that his daughter is still good,” Tran said haltingly in English.
The cousin said their trip was sponsored by an unnamed Vietnamese non-governmental organisation as the family lacked sufficient funds of their own.
“Father works as a cleaner at a market in Vietnam,” Tran said.
Lawyers Hisyam Teh and Naran Singh have been appointed to represent Huang.
Hisyam told Malay Mail Online that no trial date has been fixed yet, and that Huang's case is set for mention tomorrow at the Sepang Magistrate's court.
No plea had been recorded from either Huong or Siti Aisyah when they were charged on March 1.
“We will know on that date whether the prosecution will apply for it to be transferred to the High Court,” the lawyer said.