Criminal Defamation

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Ecuadorian journalist Juán Sarmiento sentenced to prison for ‘discrediting’ local official

Bogotá, November 20, 2020 – Ecuadorian authorities should not contest journalist Juan Sarmiento’s appeal of a recent criminal conviction for critical comments about a local politician, and the country should remove speech laws from its penal code, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On November 12, the Justice Court of Napo, in central Ecuador,…

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Journalists harassed, detained, and sentenced to jail in South Sudan

New York, November 5, 2020 — South Sudanese authorities should immediately release journalists Zechariah Makuach Maror and Jackson Ochaya and halt all acts of intimidation against the press, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On September 1, Ochaya, a reporter with the privately owned No. 1 Citizen newspaper, went missing and was later confirmed…

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CPJ welcomes repeal of criminal libel in Sierra Leone, urges further reform

Abuja, Nigeria, October 30, 2020 – The Committee to Protect Journalists today welcomed Sierra Leone’s repeal of its criminal libel laws, and called for further reforms to ensure that journalists can work freely. On October 28, President Julius Maada Bio signed a law revising the country’s 1965 Public Order Act to remove measures that criminalized…

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Iraqi judge issues arrest warrant for journalist Suadad al-Salhy

New York, October 23, 2020 – Iraqi authorities should drop the arrest warrant issued for journalist Suadad al-Salhy and allow the press to work freely, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Yesterday, a judge at the Al-Karrada Investigative Court in Baghdad issued an arrest warrant for al-Salhy, a reporter for the Middle East Eye…

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Iraqi Kurdish police arrest journalist Bahroz Jaafer over criminal defamation suit filed by Iraq’s president

New York, September 23, 2020 – Kurdish authorities in Iraq should immediately release journalist Bahroz Jaafer, drop all charges against him, and allow the press to cover and write critically about politicians without fear of detention or legal action, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Yesterday, police arrested Jaafer, a columnist for the independent…

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Investigative journalist Paola Ugaz faces criminal defamation suit in Peru

New York, September 22, 2020 — Peruvian authorities must stop the campaign of legal harassment against journalist Paola Ugaz and take steps to reform the country’s criminal defamation laws, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Yesterday, the Ninth Criminal Court of Lima held the first hearing in a criminal defamation trial for Ugaz, an…

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Colombian reporters face criminal defamation inquiry for reporting on assault allegations

Bogotá, Colombia, September 18, 2020 – Colombian authorities should not pursue criminal defamation charges against journalists Catalina Ruiz-Navarro and Matilde de los Milagros Londoño, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. In early September, the Colombian attorney general’s office ordered freelance journalists Ruiz-Navarro and Londoño to appear for questioning on September 14 in response to…

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Nicaraguan journalist David Quintana faces criminal slander suit

Managua, August 19, 2020 — Authorities in Nicaragua should drop the criminal slander proceedings against journalist David Quintana, and the country should reform its speech laws, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On July 10, Managua residents Nelson Vázquez Oporta and Junieth Dávila Cruz filed a criminal slander suit against Quintana, director of the…

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Facebook India executive files criminal complaint against journalist

New Delhi, August 19, 2020 – Facebook regional director Ankhi Das should withdraw her criminal complaint against journalist Awesh Tiwari, and respect citizens’ rights to criticize her, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On August 16, Das, Facebook’s public policy director for India, South, and Central Asia, filed a criminal complaint with the cyber…

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Nicaraguan journalist Kalúa Salazar faces criminal slander suit over corruption reporting

Managua, August 13, 2020 – Nicaraguan authorities should drop the criminal slander charges against journalist Kalúa Salazar, and ensure media outlets can report freely, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On August 10, three employees of the mayor’s office in El Rama, in southeastern Nicaragua, filed a criminal slander suit against Salazar, the editor-in-chief…

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