Mandalay Police Initiate Legal Complaint Against BBC Reporter

By Yen Saning 30 March 2015

RANGOON — A Mandalay-based Burmese journalist working for the BBC could face criminal charges for allegedly hitting a policeman after an officer initiated a legal complaint against him, Mandalay police said.

Police Inspector Win Bo said one of his men had filed a complaint at Chan Mya Thar Si Police Station against reporter Nay Myo Lin on Friday over a supposed altercation between a policeman and the journalist, while the latter was driving a motorbike to cover a demonstration.

“The police got an injury on his left eyebrow,” Win Bo said, citing a first information report, which is needed for a lawsuit to proceed. He said the BBC journalist was not being officially charged and he declined to state what criminal charge could be brought against him.

Win Bo suggested that if Nay Myo Lin would come to the police station the case could be resolved without legal procedures.

According to the first information report, police tried to stop protestors on motorbikes and several drivers fell. The report alleges that Nay Myo Lin was among those caught up in the accident, after which he allegedly hit an officer out of anger.

Burma’s junta-era Criminal Code carries punishments with prison terms of up to several years for those charged with injuring or disturbing public servants on duty.

Several dozen Mandalay-based activists and students on Friday were demonstrating and calling for the release of students who were arrested during the Letpadan crackdown on March 10.