FLAG seeks dismissal of Maria Ressa’s cyber libel case

The Free Legal Assistance Group on Tuesday filed a motion to quash before the Manila regional trial court seeking the dismissal of cyber libel complaint filed against Rappler’s Maria Ressa.

FLAG stressed Ressa and the outfit’s former writer Reynaldo Santos cannot be sued for a non-existing offense when the story was initially posted.

The story, which was posted on May 2012, claimed that Filipino-Chinese businessman Wilfredo Keng allowed then chief justice Renato Corona to use his sports utility vehicle.

Also, the Rappler report implicated Keng to dubious activities like drugs and human smuggling.

Keng filed the cyber libel complaint against Ressa, saying the libelous article was re-posted on February 2014.

The DOJ explained that an updated version of the story posted on February 19, 2014 was covered by Republic Act (RA) 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act.

But in its motion, FLAG argued that Ressa and Santos still cannot be prosecuted because technically, the Cybercrime Prevention Act was non-existent on February 2014 since its implementation was restrained by the Supreme Court.

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