17/10/2022 11:49

Is it legal to post pictures of suspects or defendants in Vietnam?

Is it legal to post pictures of suspects or defendants in Vietnam?

No one shall be considered guilty until a conviction has been made by the court. However, when many suspects and defendants were prosecuted at the court, their images immediately flooded the newspapers. So, is the press allowed to publish their pictures in Vietnam? "Lan Anh-Binh Dinh"

To your question, the Lawnet would like to answer as follows:

According to the provisions of Article 6 of the Press Law 2016, prohibited acts include “ Provides false information, distorts, slanders or hurts the prestige of organizations, agencies, honor and dignity of individuals; attributes guilt upon no judgement from the Court;

However, in Article 25 of the Press Law 2016, which stipulates the rights and obligations of journalists, journalists have the right to carry out the journalistic professional activities in the public trials; are arranged the separate area for operation; make direct contact with the persons conducting the proceedings and persons involving in the proceedings to obtain information and make interview as stipulated by law;

Thus, the Press Law 2016 does not specify whether journalists are allowed to post pictures of the suspects or defendants without the effective judgment of the Court.

At Point c, Clause 2, Article 8, Decree 119/2020/ND-CP stipulates that aA fine from VND 5,000,000 to VND 10,000,000 for posting individual photos without that individual’s consent, unless otherwise prescribed by law. Currently, Vietnam has no document regulating the other cases mentioned at point c.

Article 32 of the Civil Code 2015 stipulates the rights of individuals to images as follows:

1. Each individual has rights with respect to his/her own image.

The use of an image of an individual must have his/her consent.

When an image of an individual is used for commercial purposes, that person is eligible for a remuneration, unless otherwise agreed.

2. The use of image for any of the following purposes needs not the consent of the image’s owner or his/her legal representative:

a) For national and public benefits;

b) For public activities, including conventions, seminars, sports activities, art shows and other public activities that do not infringe the honor, dignity or prestige of the image’s owner.

3. If the use of an image violates the regulation prescribed in this Article, the image’s owner has the right to request a court to issue a decision that compel the violator or relevant entities to revoke, destroy or terminate the use of the image, compensate for damage and adopt other measures as prescribed in law.

Thus, according to Civil Code of Vietnam, the suspect and defendants must have the right to image. When taking pictures or putting them on article, the press needs their consent.

Best regards!


Nhu Y

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