Bangladeshi jailed for Facebook death threat on PM

DHAKA (AFP) - A Bangladeshi university lecturer was sentenced to jail in absentia on Thursday for threatening to kill Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and defaming her on Facebook, a prosecutor said.

A court sentenced Hafizur Rahman Rana, a lecturer at a prestigious university, to seven years in jail for posting the comments last April during a protest on campus, prosecutor Tapash Kumar Pal said.

Rana, 28, who has gone into hiding in recent months, is the second Bangladeshi to receive a prison sentence for making threatening comments on Facebook against the premier, the prosecutor told AFP.

On the social network site, Rana likened Ms Hasina to a hyena who had also destroyed the country and was trying to destroy his employer, the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET).

"First I will shoot you (Hasina) in the head and in the stomach," the prosecutor quoted the post as saying.

"Then will put (your) head on display in front of the BUET to ward off other hyenas," the post said.

Bangladesh authorities launched a series of prosecutions last year over material on Facebook pages mocking or threatening Hasina, and her father, the country's founding leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

In January last year, a 29-year-old Bangladeshi man, a lecturer at another public university, was sentenced in absentia to six months in jail after posting a Facebook message that appeared to wish for Hasina to die in a car accident.