Maria Ressa tags cyber-libel complaint a ‘harassment suit’
Rappler’s Maria Ressa along with the online news outfit’s officers have asked the Department of Justice to dismiss the cyber-libel case lodged against them by a businessman.
This as Ressa denied in her counter-affidavit the allegations hurled by complainant Wilfredo Keng. She described the complaint as just a harassment suit.
“They (prosecutors) should be doing the due diligence so that they don’t publicly malign anyone or subject innocent people to public trials without any due process. So I’m glad to go through this process and hopefully have nuisance cases, harassment suits, dropped,” she told reporters.
Former Rappler reporter Reynaldo Santos, Jr., who wrote the article against Keng, appeared in the hearing and also submitted his counter-affidavit.
Rappler directors James Bitanga, Manuel Ayala, Nico Jose Nolledo, Glenda Gloria, Felicia Atienza, Dan Alber De Padua and Jose Maria Hofilena have also all sought the dismissal of the complaint for lack of probable cause.
The were accused of committing libel under Section 4, paragraph (c), sub-paragraph (4) of Republic Act 10175, the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.
The complaint stemmed from the article “CJ using SUVs of ‘controversial’ businessmen” that Rappler published on May 29, 2012.