Vietnam has jailed 4 individuals over their roles within the dying of 39 migrants present in a refrigerated truck in Britain final yr, state media reported.

The deaths of the 31 males and eight girls from Vietnam, who had been present in a car close to London in October 2019, highlighted the dangers of unlawful migration to Europe and sparked a world outcry.

The 4 defendants – the youngest 26 and the oldest 36 – got jail sentences of between two-and-a-half years and seven-and-a-half years by a court docket in central Ha Tinh province on Monday, in keeping with the official provincial newspaper.

They had been discovered responsible of “organising, brokering unlawful emigration”, it stated, including that two others had been given suspended sentences.

However Nguyen Dinh Gia, who misplaced his 20-year-old son Luong within the tragedy, informed AFP he believed the defendants mustn’t have been given jail phrases. “The individuals concerned had been simply making an attempt to assist after which the accident occurred,” he stated. “He was an grownup who made his personal choice and joined the journey voluntarily, with the purpose to enhance his life, incomes cash to alleviate our poverty.”

Gia stated his son had needed to journey to Britain from France, the place he had been dwelling illegally since 2018.

The journey to Britain, the place he aimed to search for work in a nail salon, would have value him round £11,000 ($14,000). “It has been virtually a yr however every time I take into consideration this, it’s nonetheless painful,” Gia stated.

Luong and the vast majority of the opposite migrants got here from a handful of poor central provinces. The lorry carrying the victims – together with two 15-year-old boys – arrived on a ferry from the Belgian port of Zeebrugge within the early hours of 23 October.

They died from lack of oxygen and overheating, in keeping with autopsy examinations.

Plenty of individuals have been arrested and charged in Britain, France and Belgium in reference to the case, together with the driving force of the lorry, Maurice Robinson, of Northern Eire, who has pleaded responsible to manslaughter.

Ronan Hughes, 40, from County Armagh in Northern Eire, additionally pleaded responsible to manslaughter final month.