Taxi Driver Sentenced to Death for Rape and Murder of FDA Worker

By Zarni Mann 22 June 2018

MANDALAY — A taxi driver convicted of raping and murdering an employee of the Ministry of Health’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was sentenced to death on Friday, the final day of his trial at Yangon Eastern District Court.

Myo Zaw Oo, a.k.a Sedona, was arrested and charged under the Myanmar Penal Code for the rape and murder of Ma Shwe Yee Win, 26, a deputy supervisor of the FDA, in January. He was arrested three days after her body was found.

“The culprit was found guilty of the rape and murder of Ma Shwe Yee Win and the court handed down its decision according to the law,” U Tun Tun Oo, the spokesperson of Yangon Eastern District court, told journalists after the court session.

Since the defendant has the right to submit an appeal to a higher court within seven days, his lawyer, U Maung Maung Soe, said he would talk to his client and submit the appeal in time.

Family members and friends of Ma Shwe Yee Win who were present at the court told journalists they were satisfied with the decision.

Ma Shwe Yee Win hailed Myo Zaw Oo’s taxi to take her to her home in Dagon Township from the Hledan Center. After failing to hear from her, her family filed a missing person report and police found her naked body near Nga Moe Yeik Creek in North Dagon Township the next morning.

According to police statements, the two began to argue when the driver asked for a higher fare. Myo Zaw Oo then choked his passenger and stabbed her in the throat with a screwdriver.

The police statement says Ma Shwe Yi Win lost consciousness as Myo Zaw Oo drove her to North Dagon, where he raped her near a sports field and left her body after taking her belongings, including a platinum necklace, earrings and a mobile phone.

The death of Ma Shwe Yi Win raised public security concerns and triggered calls for rapists to be given the death penalty.

The Irrawaddy reporter Zue Zue contributed to this story from Yangon.