Vietnam gang steals gold from beggar

HANOI - Police in Vietnam charged five people with stealing nearly one kilogramme of gold from an 86-year-old homeless beggar, authorities said on Friday.

The five suspects were charged Thursday with robbery, said Thai Thi My Trang, spokeswoman for Dong Thap Province’s Police Department.

The incident happened on December 21 as the gang discovered a beggar sleeping at a market in Tram Chim town, Tam Nong District of Dong Thap province, the district police department said.

The five men allegedly searched the beggar and stole 945 grams of gold worth nearly US$42,000  dollars and 29 million dong ($1,400) in cash.

Officers arrested five people on suspicion of robbery one day later and seized around 170 grams of gold and 29 million dong in cash, the spokeswoman said.

Police said the beggar left home after a family dispute several years ago. He lives by begging at various places in the province and uses the money he is given to buy gold.

“He could remember clearly where and when he bought his gold, so his declaration seems to be correct,” said a police official who declined to be named while the case was still under investigation.

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