Tran Hoang Phuc

Current Status: Sentenced

Photo of Tran Hoang Phuc

Other Names: Trần Hoàng Phúc

Date of Birth: April 30, 1994

Gender: M


Ethnicity: Kinh

Occupation: Student

Latest Prison: Hanoi Police Detention Center No. 1, Hanoi

Areas of Activism:

  • Environment
  • Human rights

Known Affiliations:

  • Vietnamese Students for Human Rights

Arrest History

June 29, 2017
January 31, 2018
6 years in prison
  • Art. 88
June 29, 2023
Defense Counsels: Dang Dinh Manh; Nguyen Van Mieng; Le Van Luan


May 2018:

Five Vietnamese lawyers have appealed to the government to improve medical treatment for Tran Hoang Phuc. See the "Physical Health History" section below for more information. 

Phuc is a law student from Ho Chi Minh City. He is a bright, award-winning student but was prevented from graduating from law school in 2016 due to his activism.

Phuc is the founder and President of the Vietnamese Students for Human Rights Association. He is also a member of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI), a U.S. government leadership development and networking program in Southeast Asia. He was invited to meet with U.S. President Obama in 2016 during Obama’s visit in Vietnam but was blocked by police from attending the meeting. Phuc has participated in environmental rights protests and campaigns to seek compensation for those affected by the 2016 Formosa environmental disaster.

Tran Hoang Phuc was kidnapped by police in Hanoi from his apartment, on June 29, 2017. Phuc, 23 at the time, was officially charged on July 3, 2017, under Article 88, for Internet postings, particularly for video content.

He was tried on January 31, 2018, by the People's Court of Hanoi together with Nguyen Van Dien and Vu Quang Thuan. They were charged under clause 1 of Art. 88 of the 1999 Criminal Code. Phuc received a six year sentence and four years of house arrest. According to the indictment, Vu Quang Thuan and Nguyen Van Dien were accused of posting 17 video clips on the Internet and possessing materials with anti-socialist state content; Tran Hoang Phuc was accused of helping them in storing the materials and posting 3 of the 17 clips. 

March 2018:

Vu Quang Thuan, Tran Hoang Phuc, and Nguyen Van Dien have appealed their January 31, 2018, sentences. 

Prior to arrest:

On April 13, 2017, Phuc and activist Huynh Thanh Phat were attacked and left in a rural location by plainclothes assailants. Their case is one of many highlighted in Human Rights Watch's "No Country for Human Rights Activists" June 2017 report on attacks on activists in Vietnam.

May 2018:

Five Vietnamese lawyers have appealed to the government to improve medical treatment for Tran Hoang Phuc. Phuc is suffering from hepatitis C while imprisoned and has not been able to receive medication from his family, despite having a prescription from an independent facility. His mother has also still been unable to visit him since his arrest in June 2017.

Phuc has not been able to meet with his family since the arrest.

The 88 Project's archives

Defend the Defenders's archives

Vietnamese Students for Human Rights Association

Vietnam police detain blogger for anti-state propaganda, mother says, Reuters, July 7, 2017 

No Country for Human Rights Activists, Human Rights Watch, June 18, 2017 (PDF)

Prisoners of Conscience in Vietnam, Amnesty International, April 2018 (PDF)

Profile last updated: 2018-05-28 19:23:02