Coast Man to Argue Death Penalty Appeal to Mississippi Supreme Court

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A Biloxi man sentenced to death for the killing of three members of a Gulf Coast family will argue for a new trial before the Mississippi Supreme Court on September 21.

The case is among a number of appeals the court has scheduled for oral arguments in September and October. Dozens of other appeals will be decided on briefs submitted by prosecutors and defense attorneys.

The appeal from death row inmate Thong Le is one of two capital murder cases the justices will hear this term.

Le was convicted and sentenced to death in Jackson County Circuit Court in 2002. Le was charged in the 2001 deaths of Minh Hieu Thi Huynh and her daughters, 15-year-old Thuy Hang Huynh Nguyen and 11-year-old Thanh Truc Nuynh Nguyen.

Prosecutors said Le went to the family's house in St. Martin on November 1st to rob them of $1,300 dollars, but the daughters, home alone, refused to give Le and his co-defendant, Ngan Tran, the money.

Prosecutors say that's when Le and Tran tied up, beat and strangled the girls. They also attacked the mother when she came home later that night, even after she gave them money.

Tran committed suicide in April 2002 while being held at the Jackson County Jail.

Le's lawyer claimed Le robbed the family but had nothing to do with the murders.