Photo of nine month old Nguyen Thi Nhu Y
Nguyen Thi Xuan Lan (pictured) was a nine-month-old Vietnamese-Taiwanese girl who suffered horrific abuse from her mother and step-father in the southern province of Dong Thap. She was slapped, burned, beaten and covered in scorch marks as well as three deep wounds to her left thigh and in the soles of her feet which, doctors said, have been caused by hot objects applied to the skin.
On September 16, 2010, following a tip-off from a neighbor, a health officer in Long Hau commune Lai Vung District found Nhu Y covered in bruises and wounds from head to toe.
The neighbor along with witnesses said they heard the baby crying and the mother screaming and cursing. Prior to that they didn’t know about the abuse, as the girl was kept inside the house at all times.
According to doctors from the Dong Thap General Hospital, Nhu Y had bruises and wounds all over her legs and feet and all across his little body. They concluded that she suffered a 25% permanent injury.
The police would later find out that she was beaten and tortured by her own mother, Nguyen Thi Xuan Lan, and 34-year-old stepfather, Le Thanh Tam. The couple not only took turns beating Nhu Y, but her step-father even video taped the gruesome footage.
When Nhu Y was being hospitalized, the mother was permitted to enter the hospital to care for her. However, Lan was not interested, so she was separated from the child. It took police no time at all to realize who was guilty.
Photo of Nguyen Thi Xuan Lan holding Nguyen, who must have been scared when that photo was taken. She was probably wondering why this awful woman was holding her.
Photo of Nhu Y’s step-father in handcuff’s
The mother and step-father were brought in for questioning and it didn’t take long to get the both of them to confess. They told police they beat the baby girl because she often cried and they believed she was a source of bad luck for the family. They believed that hitting her would drive misfortune away.
The child’s step-father, Tam, was the first to claim she was possessed by demons and told Xuan Lan that she (the baby) had to be ‘treated’ by him. Xuan Lan agreed and on August 14, 2010, Tam used his chin to press hard into Y’s two cheeks while his hands squeezed tight onto his step daughter’s mouth and face. This particular incident was being taped.
Both the mother and her husband (Nguyen’s step-father) were arrested. Area police have prosecuted her for abusing her baby.
According to reports, the neighbor who alerted police, was the same neighbor who took custody of the child while her mother was being sentenced. The aunt took custody shortly after.
Photo of Nhu Y who is being cared for by extended family members
Photo of Nhu Y and her grandparents