By Helen Regan | 12 November 2021
CNN BUSINESS — A military court in Myanmar has sentenced American journalist Danny Fenster to 11 years in prison, his lawyer said on Friday. Fenster, a 37-year-old from Detroit, Michigan, has been detained in Myanmar for more than five months. He has been denied bail and held in Insein Prison, in the country’s biggest city, Yangon, since his May 24 arrest. At a court hearing on Friday, his lawyer Than Zaw Aung said Fenster was found guilty of three charges brought against him by the Myanmar military, which seized control of the country in a coup on February 1.
Those charges include visa breaches, unlawful association with an illegal group and incitement under section 505a of Myanmar’s Penal Code, which makes it a crime to publish or circulate comments that “cause fear” or spread “false news.” Fenster was also given a fine in local currency equivalent to $50. The trial was conducted in a military court inside Insein Prison with proceedings closed to the public.
Fenster is one of about 126 journalists or media workers detained since the coup, according to the UN. About 47 remain behind bars. Earlier this week he was hit with two new criminal charges under the country’s sedition and terrorism laws, which carry a maximum sentence of life in prison, his lawyer said. They include charges under Section 124a of Myanmar’s Penal Code, which mandates seven to 20 years imprisonment for attempting to bring hatred, contempt or disaffection toward the government and military. […]