June 3rd, 2008 Headsman
On this date in 2004, at Ho Chi Minh City’s Long Binh execution ground, Vietnamese mafioso Truong Van Cam was shot with four of his lieutenants for ordering the murder of a rival crime lord.
An anti-communist soldier during the Vietnam War, “Nam Cam” (“Cam the fifth sibling”) survived a communist re-education camp and ingratiated himself sufficiently with the powers that be through the late 1970’s and 1980’s to ensconce himself as a wealthy and influential power broker within the country.
His arrest in 2001 for ordering a hit in a characteristic underworld turf war mushroomed into a vast corruption scandal, implicating a network of official protectors who ran interference for his criminal syndicate.
More than 150 people stood trial with Nam Cam — including “two expelled members of the 150-member Communist Party central committee, the former head of the state radio system, and the former director of police in Troung Nam Cam’s base of operation, Ho Chi Minh City.” (Source)
The doomed capo reportedly indulged the comfort of gloating that “the Communists may have thought they defeated South Vietnam, but I have shown that they are rotten to the core with corruption.”
Also on this date
- 1850: Five Cayuse, for the Whitman Massacre
- 1886: Twenty-two Uganda Martyrs
- 1918: Aloïs Walput, grenadier
- 1955: Barbara Graham, of "I Want to Live" fame
- 1395: Ivan Shishman, falling to the Turks
- 1098: Yaghi-Siyan, commander of Antioch