Trial of ex-army captain nears end

Another witness has testified for the prosecution in the trial of a former army captain arrested after police allegedly found a document in his email inbox entitled ‘National Reconciliation’.

Nay Myo Zin’s family was barred from the closed court inside Rangoon’s Insein prison, where judges on Thursday last week heard a statement from deputy-police commander Swe Linn, who conducted the search at his house in early April that turned up the file.

Only three of the nine witnesses still have to testify, with the next hearing appointed for 9 June. He is being charged with the Electronics Act, although no detail has been given on the content of the document.

His mother, Khin Thi, said last month that the document, allegedly the only thing intelligence had discovered, was destined for a friend. Nay Myo Zin’s lawyer, Hla Myo Myint, said the defence team had questioned the legality of the prosecutors’ statements, as well as their demands that the 36-year-old had over his email password.

Shortly after leaving the army in 2005, Nay Myo Zin turned his attention to charity work, and volunteered for a Rangoon-based blood donor group run by a member of the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD).

His mother earlier told DVB that he had left the army on his own volition because “he didn’t enjoy it there… He is a morally strong kid who is very devoted to charity work but [has] no involvement in politics”.

If convicted under the Electronics Act, which is often used to imprison opposition activists and which can carry a 20-year jail term, Nay Myo Zin will become the first so-called political prisoner since the new Burmese government came to power in March.

His family told DVB several weeks after his arrest that they feared he had been tortured during interrogation, although he reportedly appeared healthy when they were allowed access to him following Thursday’s hearing.

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