Conflicts & War

Myanmar junta sentences Suu Kyi to 5 years in prison for corruption

Bangkok, Apr 27 (EFE).- A Myanmar court created by the military sentenced ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to five years in prison Wednesday for one of the corruption cases she faced, sources close to the case told EFE.

Suu Kyi, detained since the early hours of the February 2021 military coup, is accused of accepting bribes worth $ 600,000 and 11.4 kilos of gold from the hands of the former Yangon governor Phyo Min Thein, who testified in October against the elected leader.

The special court of Naypyidaw, created by the military junta to try Suu Kyi and other officials of the ousted government, met at 09:30am (+6:30 GMT) after which it issued its ruling, sources told EFE.

They said the legal team representing Suu Kyi was unable to meet with her Wednesday.

Since taking power, the military has begun a campaign of judicial harassment against the 76 year old for a series of various accusations that try to undermine her reputation.

Suu Kyi, sentenced to a total of six years in prison, also faces numerous other accusations of corruption for allegedly abusing her position for the rental of land, appropriating funds donated to a foundation she presided over and building a residence with them. She’s also accused of the inappropriate purchase and rental of helicopters, all crimes punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

In early December, the politician was sentenced to four years in prison, reduced to two upon receiving a pardon from the military junta, for violating the laws implemented against the pandemic and incitement against the regime.

The leader was also sentenced on Jan. 10 to another four years in prison for flaunting Covid-19 measures during an electoral act and for the illegal importation of telecommunications devices.

The former State Councilor was also tried for allegedly violating the Official Secrets Law, punished with a maximum of 14 years in prison, and is accused of electoral fraud during the November 2020 elections.

Suu Kyi’s lawyers, who have been banned by the military junta from speaking to the media, have called all the accusations against her a fabrication.

The military coup plunged Myanmar into a deep political, social and economic crisis, and opened a spiral of violence with new civilian militias that have exacerbated the guerrilla war the country has been experiencing for decades. EFE


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