Burma

Third Suspect Named in U Ko Ni Assassination Plot

By The Irrawaddy 15 February 2017

RANGOON — The President’s Office revealed on Wednesday the name of a third suspect involved in the assassination of U Ko Ni, the legal adviser to the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) government.

The suspect is Aung Win Khaing, a former lieutenant colonel in the Burma Army. Aung Win Khaing allegedly paid his elder brother Aung Win Zaw 100 million kyats (US$73,000) to kill U Ko Ni, according to the press statement issued by the President’s Office.

The brother Aung Win Zaw then allegedly offered to pay a third man, Kyi Lin, who agreed to shoot the lawyer in exchange for a car.

Kyi Lin gunned down U Ko Ni outside of Rangoon International Airport on the afternoon of Jan. 29. He ran from the crime scene, shot and killed a taxi driver, and then was captured by a mob of taxi drivers and arrested.

The police detained Aung Win Zaw in Karen State the following day. Aung Win Zaw’s confession allowed the police to identify Aung Win Khaing as a suspect, the President’s Office said Wednesday.

Aung Win Khaing, 45, was also present at Rangoon International Airport on the day of the assassination. CCTV footage revealed Aung Win Khaing checking the arrival time of U Ko Ni’s return flight from Indonesia, the President’s Office said.

As of Wednesday afternoon, authorities said that Aung Win Khaing remains at large.

Aung Win Zaw confessed that his younger brother asked him to kill the lawyer in July 2016.

The gunman Kyi Lin was reportedly offered the job around August or September.

Then on Jan. 28, the authorities said Aung Win Khaing called his elder brother and instructed him to get ready for the assassination, because U Ko Ni would return the following day.

On Jan. 29, Aung Win Khaing, his elder brother, and the gunman Kyi Lin allegedly coordinated their murder plans with phone calls and text messages.

Kyi Lin shot U Ko Ni dead around 5pm.

After Kyi Lin’s arrest, Aung Win Zaw fled Rangoon. He was detained in Karen State on Jan. 30.

The military and police are in pursuit of Aung Win Khaing and other possible conspirators, the President’s Office said.

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