Thursday, August 17, 2017

Writer discharged but not editor; bail rejected

Bahan township court discharged the satirist writer U Ko Ko Maung under section 66(d) of the 2013 Telecommunication Law, but the Voice’s chief editor U Kyaw Min Swe was denied bail on Friday.

According to the Ministry of Transportation and Communication, U Ko Ko Maung had just sent the article to the media office and was not involved in uploading so he was discharged on Friday.

U Ko Ko Maung was released but U Kyaw Min Swe was not freed, defence lawyer U Myo Thein said.

In his second bail request, U Myo Thein it was wrong to bring charges in the case under section 479(1) of the Criminal Procedure Code instead of under section 9(g) of the 2014 Press Media Law.

The defence lawyer showed specialist doctor’s statements to the court for U Kyaw Min Swe, who is suffering from stomach and liver disease.

“We appealed to the judge, but it was not granted. Now we have to appeal the decision of the lower court to the upper court,” he said.

U Ko Ko Maung said his rights were violated by being detained in jail for 14 days, and section 66(d) should not be used to sue the local press in place of the Press Media Law.

“I’ve been freed by the court, so I’ll be involved in the case as a witness. We are being prosecuted without evidence. So I’ll stand with U Kyaw Min Swe,” he said.

At a news conference in May, Daw Nu Nu Yin, Attorney General’s Office permanent secretary, said they had suggested to the court to grant bail in the case.

Bahan township court has scheduled the next hearing in the case for June 23.