Hontiveros lauds acquittal of Rappler CEO Maria Ressa

Hontiveros lauds acquittal of Rappler CEO Maria Ressa

By Liza Soriano

Rappler CEO Maria Ressa (Rappler photo courtesy) 

MANILA — Senator Risa Hontiveros has lauded the decision of the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) first division for acquitting Rappler CEO Maria Ressa and Rappler Holdings Corp. of tax evasion charges.

“The dismissal of these trumped-up cases is an important win for free and defiant journalism in the Philippines,” Hontiveros said.

“I hope that the other charges against Maria Ressa and Rappler will soon be similarly dropped, as these were only intended to silence and intimidate members of the media from reporting on and speaking against the excesses of the previous administration, particularly on the bloody, abusive and failed war on drugs,” the senator added.

The CTA on Wednesday ruled in favor of Ressa’s acquittal for “failure of the prosecution to prove the guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Hontiveros stressed that she supports a free press as the country continues to fight for a democratic nation.

“In a democracy, truth-telling and sharing independent views is not a crime – even if it irks and annoys the powers that be. I am one with our nation’s free press in continuing to hold the line and in fighting for a truly free and democratic nation.”

(ai/mtvn)

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