No bail for EMG boss after another heart attack

Another appeal for bail for the Eleven Media Group (EMG) CEO Dr Than Htut Aung, charged with the Telecommunications Law's Section 66(d), was rejected on December 30.

Kyi Myint, the CEO’s lawyer, said; “Today we appealed again for the bail but were rejected. Another court hearing will be held on January 6. Dr Than Htut Aung's health isn’t good. On the way to the court from Insein Prison, he suffered another heart attack. He couldn’t sit in the court hearing and had to lie on the bench. He appealed to the judge to let him meet his doctor at the North Okkalapa hospital but it was refused. The plaintiff couldn’t come to court as he had a meeting to attend."

Concerning the CEO’s apology printed in the week, Than Htur Aung said: “One reason is my health as my cardiac condition is critical and I have heart attacks. The next thing is the present government was elected by us and we admire our government. That’s why I apologised,” said Dr Than Htut Aung.

On December 9, he accidentally slipped at the prison and his back was injured. During an X-ray at Insein, he was dropped from his stretcher, causing further damage.

Dr Than Htut Aung and chief editor Wai Phyo were charged over an editorial, “A year after the Nov 8 polls”, written by Dr Than Htut Aung in early November.

On November 9, they were charged under the Telecommunications Law by the Yangon Region government.

Anyone can sue anyone else under the Section 66(d) for alleged online abuse, regardless of whether they were the subject of the remarks. It carries a threat of up to three years in prison and suspects are normally refused bail, which is deeply controversial for alleged defamation, meaning it is often used to jail journalists and political activists during prolonged trials.