HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — A Vietnamese court on Tuesday sentenced a flight attendant to two years probation for violating COVID-19 quarantine rules and spreading the virus to others, become the first person in the country to stand trial for such offences, state media said.

Duong Tan Hau, 29, was found guilty of the charges for leaving his home during a mandatory home quarantine routine after he returned from a trip to Japan while working for the national carrier Vietnam Airlines, Vietnam News Agency reported.

The newspaper said Hau frequently met a friend, who is a teacher, went to a cafe and attended an exam at an English center in Ho Chi Minh city before he tested positive for the virus toward the end of his scheduled quarantine period last November.

At the time, Vietnam had not recorded a local case of COVID-19.

At least three people associating with Hau, including the teacher, later tested positive for the virus, the newspaper said.

The outbreak led several schools to temporarily close and more than 2,200 people in the chain of contact were told to quarantine and practice social distancing.

According to Health Ministry figures, Vietnam has reported 2,594 cases of COVID-19 and 35 deaths since the pandemic began.