Education: University graduate
Occupation: DVB VJ, writer and artist
Arrest date: 16 April 2010
Sentence date: 6 February 2011
U Zeya was arrested at his home in Rangoon on 16 April 2010, shortly after his son Sithu Zeya had been arrested for taking photos of the water festival bombings in Rangoon. Sithu had reportedly confessed to his father being a DVB reporter after days of torture.
The 58-year-old had led a team of DVB VJs inside Burma. His lawyer said after the trial that the only witnesses in the closed prison court were police. The trial ended in Februry 2011 and he was sentenced to 13 years in prison under the Immigration Act, Unlawful Associations Act, and Electronics Act.
First arrested in 1976 for participating in a students' strike, U Zeya has a long history of political activism. Under the pen name Thargyi Maung Zeya, he has also written poems and articles in a number of Burmese magazines and journals.
(In order to avoid any confusion with another writer inside Burma, the Free Burma VJ campaign has changed Maung Maung Zeya's name to U Zeya)