Myanmar Judge Released From Prison And Gets New Posting

The junta’s judicial authorities have transferred a Mandalay township judge who was arrested in late March 2021 for speaking out against Myanmar’s coup regime to a new posting in Bago Region, legal experts say.
Judge Ko Ko has reportedly been assigned to work in a court in Nyaunglebin Township.
“They found no obvious evidence of his wrongdoing, so they released him. Then he was transferred to another town after an investigation by the regional court,” a lawyer from the Mandalay-based Lawyers Network told Myanmar media.
Ko Ko was arrested on March 25, 2021 after he accused the military council of interfering with the judicial system in a Facebook post. Against him, the Chanmyathazi Township police chief filed a lawsuit for creating division among government employees and incitement under Section 505a of the Penal Code.
Ko Ko was released from detention at Mandalay’s No. 11 police station in early April, before his 14-day remand had been completed. Lawyers Network reports that he was transferred to Nyaunglebin in May.
A township judge is a gazetted official who must not be arrested without permission from his department. An internal investigation was conducted and he was transferred to another township, apparently as a punitive measure,” a lawyer in Mandalay told the Myanmar media.
Ko Ko was appointed deputy judge at the Chanmyathazi Township court in 2018 and promoted to township judge one year later. He is also the son-in-law of former Mandalay Region High Court Chief Justice Soe Thein, who retired in 2020 under a government led by the National League for Democracy.
Although his arrest stemmed from criticism of the coup council, Ko Ko was not widely perceived as resisting the military regime; in the days leading up to his arrest, he was criticized for writing Facebook posts condemning those involved in the Civil Disobedience Movement.
According to the Reenthe Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, more than 4,000 people have been arrested in the country since the February 1 military coup.


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