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Dutch journalist Okke Ornstein jailed in Panama for criminal defamation

Dutch journalist Okke Ornstein is detained in Panama over a criminal defamation case. (Kimberlyn David)

New York, November 29, 2016--Authorities in Panama should immediately release Dutch journalist Okke Ornstein, who has been detained since November 15, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Ornstein, a Panama-based journalist who runs the news website Bananama Republic, was arrested in relation to a 2012 criminal defamation conviction when he arrived at Panama City international airport, according to his lawyer, Manuel Succari.

November 29, 2016 3:48 PM ET

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CPJ urges OAS not to weaken human rights system

Dear OAS Ministers of Foreign Affairs: Ahead of the assembly of the Organization of American States on Friday, the Committee to Protect Journalists urges you to oppose any attempts to debilitate the regional human rights system. The failure of member states to preserve the autonomy and independence of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and its special rapporteur on freedom of expression would make citizens throughout the hemisphere more vulnerable to human rights violations and represent a blow to democracy in the Americas.

March 18, 2013 12:40 PM ET

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Case   |   Panama

Panamanian daily's offices blockaded after critical reports

About 30 trucks from Transcaribe Trading (TCT), a local construction company in Panama City, surrounded the offices of the daily La Prensa on August 2, 2012, from around 10 p.m. until 1:30 a.m., preventing the paper's trucks and employees from leaving the premises, according to news reports. TCT workers told local journalists that they were there because the daily's reports were jeopardizing the future of the company, and thus their jobs, according to news reports.

Alerts   |   Panama, Spain

Critical Spanish journalists expelled from Panama

New York, March 2, 2011--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on the Panamanian government to allow two Spanish journalists and human rights activists who were expelled to return to the country. The journalists were covering and documenting an indigenous demonstration on Saturday when they were detained by authorities and accused of "disrupting public order" according to an official statement

Alerts   |   Panama

In Panama, defamation conviction draws outcry

Panamanian journalists organize a demonstration in front of the Supreme Court to protest criminal defamation. (laestrella.com.pa)

New York, October 7, 2010--A Panamanian court of appeals has convicted two TV journalists of criminal defamation and banned them from professional work for one year, news reports said. While President Ricardo Martinelli said he would pardon the journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today that lawmakers should repeal all criminal penalties for defamation.

Alerts   |   Panama

Veteran Panamanian journalist jailed on defamation charges

(Estudio1panama.com)

New York, June 30, 2010—A 70-year-old Panamanian journalist arrested and jailed Saturday on a 2008 defamation conviction should be immediately released, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

The charges against Carlos Núñez López, at left, stemmed from a 2005 story in the now-defunct weekly newspaper La Crónica about environmental damage in the province of Bocas del Toro, his lawyer, Luis Ferreyra, told CPJ. A landowner alleged his reputation had been damaged by the article, the local press said.

Alerts   |   Panama

Panamanian journalist sentenced to two years in prison

New York, April 30, 2009--A Panama City court has sentenced leading Panamanian journalist Jean Marcel Chéry to two years in prison on trespassing charges stemming from a years-long series of complaints filed by a Supreme Court justice. The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Justice Winston Spadafora to end his politically motivated harassment.

April 30, 2009 4:12 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Panama

Judge orders seizure of weekly after story on alleged tax evasion

New York, September 8, 2008--The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned by the decision of a Panamanian civil court on Friday to order the seizure of assets belonging to a weekly newspaper, as well as portions of two staff members' salaries. The ruling came after the publication ran a story on alleged tax evasion by a local real estate tycoon.

September 8, 2008 10:07 PM ET
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