Ressa's cyberlibel conviction not yet final — FLAG

Published June 15, 2020, 2:12 PM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Jeffrey Damicog 

The Free Legal Assistance Group (FLAG) has assured the cyberlibel conviction of Rappler chief executive officer (CEO) Maria Ressa and former reporter Reynaldo Santos Jr. is not yet final.

Manila Regional Trial Court Judge Rainelda Estacio-Montesa has found Rappler’s Executive Editor and CEO Maria Ressa and its former researcher-writer Rey Santos Jr. guilty of violating Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act specifically for cyber libel. Ressa conducted a press briefing after the hearing. Photo by Jansen Romero
Manila Regional Trial Court Judge Rainelda Estacio-Montesa has found Rappler’s Executive Editor and CEO Maria Ressa and its former researcher-writer Rey Santos Jr. guilty of violating Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act specifically for cyber libel. Ressa conducted a press briefing after the hearing. (Jansen Romero / MANILA BULLETIN)

“The case is far from over,” assured FLAG chairman Jose Manuel “Chel” Diokno in his social media post on Monday, June 15.

Both Ressa and Santos are represented by FLAG Metro Manila coordinator and former Supreme Court (SC) spokesman Theodore Te.

“May motion for reconsideration at appeal pa, kaya di pa tapos ang laban (We can still file a motion for reconsideration and appeal),” Diokno reminded.

“Ituloy natin ang pagtutok sa kasong ito at patuloy tayo magsalita ng katotohanan sa mga nasa kapangyarihan (We will continue to focus on this case and we continue to speak about the truth concerning those in power),” he added.

The Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 46 on Monday promulgated its decision and found the two accused guilty of cyberlibel under the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.

The cyberlibel case stemmed from the May 29, 2012 article published in Rappler’s website and written by Santos Jr.

Titled “CJ Using SUVs of Controversial Businessman,” the article said that then Chief Justice Renato Corona was using a 2011 Chevrolet Suburban which was found registered to Keng whom Santos described as “shady” and involved in various crimes including illegal drugs and murder.

At that time, Corona was facing an impeachment complaint.

READ MORE: Manila court convicts Ressa, former Rappler researcher of cyber libel

 
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