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A military court in Burma on Wednesday sentenced ousted former leader Aung San Suu Kyi to five years in prison for corruption.
It was the first lawsuit against 11 corruption cases against the elected leader, which was removed from power last year in a military coup, Reuters reported. Her party won in a landslide at the 2020 election before the coup.
The Army claimed it was acting because there had been massive election fraud, but independent election observers found no major irregularities.
She could spend the rest of her life in jail if she is found guilty on all charges.
She is accused of having received $ 600,000 in bribes from a colleague, which she denies and has called “absurd”. Her supporters and experts say the charges were settled to keep her out of power.
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Mass protests began after the January 2021 coup, which was often crushed by violence by the military, which has been condemned by the international community.
The trial was closed to the media, diplomats and spectators. The news of her conviction came from an anonymous legal official who was not authorized to speak about the trial, Reuters reported.
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In previous cases, Suu Kyi was sentenced to six years in prison for convictions for illegal importation and possession of walkie-talkies, violation of coronavirus restrictions and riots.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.