South African cocaine trafficker sentenced to death in Vietnam
South African cocaine trafficker Tyron Lee Coetzee has been sentenced to death in Vietnam.
It is a widely known fact that Southeast Asia has some of the toughest laws on drugs, and that no amount of money is worth that risk for it’s not merely jail time but death you face if you get caught.
This is the case of Tyron Lee Coetzee, a 34-year old from Port Elizabeth who has just been sentenced to death in Vietnam (little Cape Town) for smuggling 1.46 kg of cocaine from Brazil into the Southeast Asian country.
It all started in June 2016, when Coetzee was arrested at Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat Airport after officials found the narcotics in his luggage.
His trial began in May 2017 but was temporarily suspended after he said he suffered from schizophrenia.
As is the reality with most of these cases, Coetzee’s family was only notified of the charges weeks later.
Candidate for coercion
According to TshishaLIVE, Coetzee was on his way to visit his sister in PE from Joburg, but instead made his way to Brazil and then Ho Chi Minh City…
After 5 weeks of worry, the South African authorities informed his family of the arrest.
His older sister Chantal feels that her baby brother was the victim of coercion by a trafficking syndicate, made easier by his “difficult life.”
“He didn’t finish school, he struggled to hold down a job,” Chantal said, adding that the family had tried to have Coetzee psychologically assessed prior to his arrest.
Disappointed by the Government’s inaction to the matter, the Coetzee family will now do everything in their power to appeal against the sentence.
Please note: In Vietnam transporting 100 grams or more of cocaine is a criminal offence, punishable by death. Just don’t do it- don’t take drugs into Southeast Asian countries!
South African cocaine trafficker has just 15 days to successfully appeal against the sentence.