The Irrawaddy

As She Was Dying, Maid Told Me She Had Been Tortured: Witness  

YANGON—A prosecution witness in the trial of a woman accused of killing a domestic worker testified on Thursday that the victim had suffered serious injuries due to torture.

Khin Thandar Oo (also known as Kayin Ma), 38, a mother of four, died shortly after being sent home by her employer, Theingi Su, the wife of a military officer, in May.

Prosecution witness Daw Hla Hla Htay testified about the injuries she saw on Kayin Ma’s body, and said the victim told her she had been tortured.

The witness “testified that Kayin Ma showed [Daw Hla Hla Htay] her injuries and that there were other people who witnessed her injuries at that time,” prosecution lawyer Daw San San Myint told The Irrawaddy.

Kayin Ma was working at the quarters of the military officer of the Inn Daing armored battalion in Yangon’s Hlegu Township.

She died within an hour of being sent home to Oh Po village in Twante Township by Theingi Su, on May 19, because she was ill.

According to a post-mortem examination, the woman died of injuries to her intestines, and her death could have been averted if she had been hospitalized in time.

Theingi Su was arrested for murder and is facing trial at the Yangon South District Court in Thanlyin Township.

A member of Theingi Su’s family threatened to sue reporters covering the trial.

“They can’t do that. The press has a right to report the news,” Daw San San Myint said.

Reporters said they had been threatened with legal action by relatives of Theingi Su at previous hearings. When asked by the reporters if the court planned to take action over the threats, U Moe Wai, the court’s information officer, said he could not comment because he did not have sufficient details.

Starting with the previous hearing, the Yangon South District Court barred the press from taking pictures or making video recordings of Theingi Su.

The ban came after the husband of Theingi Su sent a letter dated July 7 to the court, asking it to bar the press from photographing or recording her.

U Moe Wai said the ban had nothing to do with the military officer’s request, but declined to explain further.