Burma

Junta Court Sentences Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi to Another Four Years

By The Irrawaddy 10 January 2022

A special court set up by the Myanmar junta in Naypyitaw sentenced detained State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to an additional four years’ imprisonment on Monday in three cases against her, including alleged illegal possession of walkie-talkies and breaching COVID-19 restrictions.

Sources close to the court told The Irrawaddy that the sentences comprised two years’ imprisonment for the illegal import of walkie-talkies under the Export Import Law; one year for the possession of these devices under the Telecommunications Law; and two years for the COVID-19 charge under the Natural Disaster Management Law.

The first two sentences are to be served concurrently.

The verdicts in the cases were announced after two hearing postponements last month.

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, 76, who has been detained since the day of the Feb. 1 coup, has now been given a total of six years in prison by the junta.

The court handed her a four-year sentence on Dec. 10 on charges of sedition and breaching COVID-19 restrictions. On the same day, the junta leader commuted the prison sentence to two years.

She is facing another seven charges including alleged corruption and breaching the Official Secrets Act. She faces a potential combined prison term of over 100 years on all of the charges, which are widely viewed as trumped-up, politically motivated and an attempt by the junta to exclude her from Myanmar politics.

Junta forces raided Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s residence in Naypyitaw in the early morning hours of Feb. 1 ahead of the coup, without a search warrant, and claimed to have found illegally imported walkie-talkies, which they said were used by her security forces.

Five police officers testified as prosecution witnesses in the two cases. But their testimony as to where and from whom they seized the walkie-talkies differed, sources close to the court said.

Today’s verdict on the breach of COVID-19 regulations is based on Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s door-to-door visits to party members ahead of the 2020 elections.

Since last month’s verdicts, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has appeared in court wearing a prison uniform: a white top and brown longyi.

The junta has barred all five of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s lawyers from speaking to the media since October, so details of the court hearings as well as her whereabouts are unknown to the public.


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