Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
FUGITIVE CHARGED WITH 2005 SHOOTING MURDER OF MAN OUTSIDE STANTON BAR AFTER BEING ARRESTED ON WARRANT IN ARIZONA
SANTA ANA – A fugitive living in Arizona has been arrested and charged with murdering a man in 2005 by shooting him several times after attacking him with a belt outside of a bar. Cuong Viet Nguyen, 27, formerly of Garden Grove, was charged yesterday with one felony count of murder, one felony count of attempted murder, and sentencing enhancements for the personal discharge of a firearm causing death and the personal discharge of a firearm causing great bodily injury. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 50 years to life in prison. Nguyen is being held without bail and is scheduled for continued arraignment July 11, 2008, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-55, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
On June 26, 2005, Nguyen is accused of going with a group of his friends to the All Star Bar in Stanton. The defendant and his friends are accused of getting into a fight inside the bar with another group of men, including victim Tri Van Bui. The bouncers instructed both groups to leave the bar. Nguyen and an unknown friend are accused of waiting outside of the bar and chasing Bui after he had finished speaking with a bouncer. The defendant and his friend are accused of removing their belts and repeatedly hitting the victim, including using the buckle to hit Bui in the head. When Bui was on the ground, Nguyen is accused of pulling out a firearm and murdering the victim by shooting him six times. While firing at the victim, Nguyen is accused of hitting another man, John Doe, in the arm.
Nguyen fled the scene and a warrant was issued for his arrest in 2006. The defendant was arrested last week living in Phoenix, Az., and was brought back to Orange County on Wednesday, June 18, 2008, to face charges.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.