BBC reporter to appeal Myanmar jail sentence

BBC Myanmar reporter Nay Lin was jailed for three months for assaulting a police officer.

Story highlights

  • Nay Lin was convicted of assaulting a police officer during a March 2015 protest
  • His wife told CNN he accidentally pushed the officer while filming

Yangon, Myanmar (CNN)A BBC reporter jailed for three months in Myanmar will appeal his sentence, his lawyer told CNN.

A court in Mandalay -- Myanmar's second-largest city -- convicted Nay Lin, of the BBC's Burmese service, of assaulting a police officer following an incident in March 2015.
    According to Nay Lin's lawyer, the reporter had been covering clashes between police and student protesters when he unintentionally hurt the officer.
    Nay Lin's wife said her husband accidentally pushed the police officer while filming police trying to stop protesters on motorbikes.
    "The court only used witnesses for the prosecution," Zar Ni Mann, 35, told CNN. "They rejected the witnesses from (my husband's) side."
    In a statement, the BBC said it would "continue to work with (Nay Lin's) lawyer to support his appeal."

    'Harsh sentence'

    In a statement, the Foreign Correspondent's Club of Myanmar denounced the court's decision, saying "such a harsh sentence meted out against a journalist could tarnish the image of the new civilian government" elected in March after over two decades of military rule.
    Under the country's constitution, the Home Ministry -- which oversees police and the judiciary -- remains under the control of the military.
    This isn't the first time in recent weeks that the BBC has faced trouble in Asia. Last month, Tokyo correspondent Rupert Wingfield-Hayes were expelled from North Korea over "disrespectful" reports about the country's dictator Kim Jong Un.