Aug 19, 2008 (DVB)–Eleven people detained in connection with last September’s public demonstrations, including prominent monk U Gambira, have appeared before Insein prison court to hear charges against them, said family members.
U Gambira's sister Ma Khin Thu Htay said the monk was charged with 10 different violations at his first court appearance yesterday.
The charges included violations of article 13/1 of the Illegal Border Crossing Act, 17/1 of the Unlawful Association Act and 5(j) of the Emergency Protection Act, as well as inciting a riot, causing public alarm, bringing the Sasana into disrepute and violating the press law.
"We weren't informed of the court hearing – we only heard about it from a friend so we went," said Khin Thu Htay.
She said the next court hearings were scheduled for 20, 27 and 28 August and 1 September.
The other defendants were identified as U Gambira's brother Ko Aung Kyaw Kyaw, Maggin abbot U Eindria, Ko Than Naing of Taung Twin Gyi, Ko Kyaw Kyaw Naing of Myit Che, monk U Kaylatha of Mandalay, monk U Thumana, U Shwe Maung, Ko Wunna Maung from Mandalay and one unknown person.
They faced up to five charges each and will appear at their next court hearing on 27 August.
Reporting by Nan Kham Kaew