Myanmar Policeman Testifies to Entrapment Orders

Reuters journalist Wa Lone, center, thumbs up as he is escorted by police upon arrival at the court for trial in Yangon. Photo: Thein Zaw / Associated Press
Reuters journalist Wa Lone, center, thumbs up as he is escorted by police upon arrival at the court for trial in Yangon. Photo: Thein Zaw / Associated Press

YANGON — The prosecution of two Myanmar journalists accused of violating a state secrets law by acquiring official documents given to them by police has suffered a setback after a police officer testified that he and his colleagues were ordered to entrap the reporters.

Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo of the Reuters news agency were arrested on Dec. 12 on charges that could get them up to 14 years in prison.

The two had helped cover the crisis in Rakhine state, where an aggressive counterinsurgency operation drove about 700,000 Rohingya Muslims to neighboring Bangladesh.

Police Capt. Moe Yan Naing says a senior officer had arranged for two policemen to meet the reporters and hand over secret documents, and threatened that if they didn’t arrest them, they would be jailed themselves.