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FPJ Explains: Why did Myanmar court sentence Aung San Suu Kyi for 4 more years in prison?

11:14 AM Jan 10, 2022 | FPJ Web Desk

A court in Myanmar sentenced ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to four more years in prison on Monday after finding her guilty of illegally importing and possessing walkie-talkies and violating coronavirus restrictions, a legal official said.

Why has the court sentenced Aung San Suu Kyi for four more years in prison?

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The Myanmar court sentenced Suu Kyi to four more years in prison after finding her guilty of illegally importing and possessing walkie-talkies and violating coronavirus restrictions.

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Suu Kyi was convicted last month on two other charges and given a four-year prison sentence, which was then halved by the head of the military-installed government.

The cases are among about a dozen brought against the 76-year-old Nobel Peace Prize laureate since the army seized power last February, ousting her elected government.

Suu Kyi's supporters say the charges against her are contrived to legitimize the military's actions and prevent her from returning to politics.

Last month-

A special court in Myanmar's capital sentenced the country's ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, to four years in prison on December 7, 2021. She was found guilty of incitement and violating coronavirus restrictions.

The Myanmar court found Aung San Suu Kyi on two charges — of inciting the public against the military and breaching the COVID-19 protocols in the country.

The incitement case involved statements posted on her party's Facebook page after she and other party leaders had already been detained by the military, while the coronavirus charge involved a campaign appearance ahead of elections in November last year which her party overwhelmingly won.

The army, whose allied party lost many seats in the election, claimed massive voting fraud, but independent election observers did not detect any major irregularities.

The ruling by the court in Naypyitaw was conveyed by a legal official who insisted on anonymity for fear of being punished by the authorities. Suu Kyi's trials are closed to the media and spectators, and her lawyers, who had been the sole source of information on the proceedings, were served with gag orders in October forbidding them from releasing information.

The sentencing was the first in a series of cases in which the 76-year-old Nobel laureate is being prosecuted since the army seized power on Feb 1, preventing her National League for Democracy party from starting a second five-year term in office. According to reports, she is facing a total of 11 charges, and if found guilty she could be sentenced to a maximum imprisonment of 102 years.

Cases against Aung San Suu Kyi:

The cases against Suu Kyi are widely seen as contrived to discredit her and keep her from running for the next election. The constitution bars anyone sent to prison after being convicted of a crime from holding high office or becoming a lawmaker.

She is being tried in several other cases including four separate corruption charges over the alleged acceptance of bribes and abuse of office to obtain favourable terms on property transactions. Other cases include violation of the Official Secrets Act, in which jailed Australian economist Sean Turnell is a co-defendant.

A trial on a fifth corruption charge has not yet started, and state media last month announced a sixth charge has also been filed against Suu Kyi. The latest charge accuses her and Win Myint of corruption in granting permits to rent and buy a helicopter.

(With AP and PTI inputs)

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