Provincial journalist convicted of defamation

MAY 22, 2007

Rocío Vásquez Goicochea, Investigando Chimbote


The Fifth Criminal Court of Lima convicted Vásquez, director of the weekly Investigando Chimbote in the northeastern Áncash region, of defamation, the journalist told CPJ. Vásquez was handed a one-year suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay 3,000 soles (US$900) as civil reparation to local businessman Samuel Dyer.

The case stems from a March 2005 defamation suit brought forward by Dyer, who claimed Vásquez had defamed him and seriously hurt his business after a series of reports that accused his company of illegal fishing practices and corruption, Vásquez told CPJ. The journalist said all her allegations were supported by documents. Dyer denied the allegations.

Vásquez said her lawyers filed an appeal on May 23.

In 2004, Vásquez told CPJ that she had received repeated death threats and had been forced to resign from the local daily Las Últimas Noticias after she initially reported on illegal fishing practices.