The Naypyidaw Prison Court has sentenced Myanmar’s former State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi to a further three years in prison on a charge of election fraud, sources close to the court told RFA.
Friday’s ruling comes on top of 17 years of sentences for 10 previous cases.
“The previous cases were ordered without hard labor. This sentence was imprisonment with hard labor in addition to the maximum punishment. I have learned that the lawyers will continue to appeal,” a source close to the court said.
The case was brought on the grounds that Suu Kyi used undue influence on the Union Election Commission (UEC) under Section 130 (a) of the Penal Code. The same charge was brought against former President Win Myint and former Union Cabinet Office Minister Min Thu, who also received three-year sentences.
Kyaw Htwe, a member of the National League for Democracy (NLD) Central Working Committee, said that Suu Kyi and the NLD-led government leaders did not use any undue influence regarding the election, and the UEC, which was in charge of the 2020 election, acted in accordance with legal procedures.
Suu Kyi testified at her trial on July 15 that she did not use improper influence on the Election Commission regarding the 2020 election and acted in accordance with the law.
The 2020 election was free and fair even though it had a few weaknesses, according to domestic and international election monitoring groups.
However, the military seized power on February 1, 2021 with the pretext that the election was rigged.
A total of 505 people, including Suu Kyi, Win Myint, NLD-led government members and those in charge of the 2020 Election Commission, have been charged with election fraud, the military council’s new election commission said at a press conference in Naypyidaw on August 17.
Mandalay Region Chief Minister Zaw Myint Maung was sentenced to three years in prison under Section 130 (a) of the Penal Code.
Kayin State Chief Minister Nan Khin Htwe Myint was sentenced to three years in prison and Mon State Chief Minister Aye Zan was sentenced to two years in prison by the military council’s courts.
Hla Thein, chairman of the Election Commission, along with Than Htay and Myint Naing, who were members of the UEC during the NLD-led Government, were all sentenced to three years in prison under Section 130 (a) of the Penal Code.
Aung San Suu Kyi was charged with 19 cases after the military coup and is currently serving 20 years in prison for 11 cases.
On June 22, Suu Kyi, 77, was transferred to solitary confinement in Naypyidaw Prison. She still faces trials for another eight cases in the prison court.
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