Wednesday, October 10, 2018
The Mrauk U Township Court has dismissed charges against eight youths from Mrauk U, Rakhine State yesterday due to insufficient evidence.
However, the police are planning to file charges against them under Section 332 of the Penal Code for allegedly assaulting public servants and they have been released on a bail of Ks 500,000 each with two guarantors.
“They were remanded in custody after they were charged under Section 16 of the Union Flag Law. They were detained in Mrauk U Township Police Station. Since their remand period expired today (October 9), they were taken to Mrauk U Township Court but the court dismissed the case against the eight children, who were involved in Mrauk U incident, due to insufficient evidence. However, the police brought them to the police station and asked them to apply for police bail as they were going to charge them under Section 332. They were released on bail of Ks 500,000 each, with two guarantors per bail bond,” said U Tun Aung Kyaw, a high grade pleader representing their case and general secretary of the Arakan National Party (ANP).
He said they will continue to defend in line with the law even though the police plan to continue filing charges against the eight youths.
“The police said this, but these children have already faced trial for eight months. It is against the law to repeatedly file charges on a single subject so the defense lawyers will defend them using all the rights granted by the law to prevent [the authorities] from filing additional charges,” U Tun Aung Kyaw continued.
He added that he was glad to see the eight youths returning home after being released from custody.
The release youths are Kyaw Win Naing, Kyaw Min Soe, U Than Zaw, Aung Kyaw Myint, Shwe Maung, Aung Htay, Tun Kyaw Sein, and Kyaw Kyaw Naing.
Seven civilians were killed and 12 civilians were injured during the police crackdown against a peaceful demonstration after local authorities banned a public talk for commemorating the 233rd anniversary of the fall of the Rakhine kingdom on January 16, 2018.
Among the 12 injured, eight civilians, who were seeking medical treatment in Sittwe Hospital, were arrested for destroying public property under Section 6 (1) of the Public Property Protection Act. The Sittwe Township Court gave them an eight-month sentence under Section 148 of the Penal Code on September 24.
Although the eight youths were expected to be released on that day of the sentencing since they had already spent over eight months in custody, the police did not release them and they continued to keep them in custody in order to file charges against them under Section 16 of the Union Flag Law. After the remand period expired, they were taken to the Mrauk U Township Court and their case was dismissed.