Verdict for Kachin Aid Worker Jailed for Facebook Post Expected on Friday

By The Irrawaddy 20 January 2016

RANGOON — A Rangoon court is expected to deliver a ruling later this week on the case of a Kachin social worker arrested in October over a Facebook post he disputes sharing, according to the defendant’s wife.

Patrick Khum Jaa Lee was arrested on Oct. 14 and charged under Article 66(d) of Burma’s Telecommunications Law for defamation for allegedly sharing a photo of a man dressed in traditional Kachin attire stomping on an image of Burma Army Commander-in-Chief Snr-Gen Min Aung Hlaing.

The Kachin aid worker has since been denied bail on numerous occasions despite appeals on the grounds of his deteriorating health.

Patrick Khum Jaa Lee has maintained he did not share the offending post. Shortly after his arrest, his wife, renowned rights activist May Sabe Phyu, told The Irrawaddy she feared the case was fabricated.

Following another hearing at Rangoon’s Hlaing Township court on Tuesday, May Sabe Phyu wrote on Facebook that the judge would deliver a verdict on Friday.

“The plaintiffs can’t provide any evidence that the accused posted the defamatory post and they failed to show solid digital evidence that it was the accused’s Facebook account,” May Sabe Phyu wrote.