A military court in Vietnam has granted an arrest warrant to a former soldier accused of being a high-level military officer responsible for the torture and execution of hundreds of prisoners in Vietnam.
The court on Monday granted the warrant for the former soldier, identified only by his surname Chen, to be held in a military prison in southern Vietnam.
The military had initially sought Chen’s extradition to the US to face charges of war crimes.
According to his arrest warrant, Chen was convicted of killing and maiming more than a dozen Vietnamese prisoners and using them for interrogation, including by beating and choking them with rubber mallets and bamboo sticks.
He is currently serving a sentence in a US military prison for crimes against the US military.
In 2015, Chen had been sentenced to a life sentence for the murder of a Vietnamese prisoner and sentenced to death by a military tribunal.
The US government said Chen killed at least 20 prisoners at an interrogation facility in Vietnam, but the military said it could not be certain.
Chen’s lawyers argued his convictions were politically motivated, and that he had committed no crimes at the time of his arrest.
They also alleged that Chen had tortured and abused prisoners for years.
The Vietnamese authorities have not yet commented on the arrest warrant.