Malacañang insisted that Rappler CEO Maria Ressa failed to present evidence to counter the cyber libel charges filed by the complaining businessman and she was found guilty in Manila court.
Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 46 convicted Ressa and former Rappler researcher Reynaldo Santos Jr. guilty of cyber libel and sentenced to six months to six years in prison.
Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque, based on Judge Rainelda Estacio-Montesa’s ruling, said Ressa did not submit counter-evidence in the case filed by Wilfredo Keng in connection with an article released by Rappler linking him to criminal activities and destroying his reputation.
According to Sec. Roque, the conviction in Ressa’s case is true because there is no evidence or evidence of malice in their story.
Sec. Roque said President Rodrigo Duterte had nothing to do with Ressa’s case and the court’s decision.
“However, when Maria Ressa was not convicted, they did not introduce evidence that they did not have malice. They did not introduce evidence that they had vandalized them or reported that a private individual was a criminal before they were published, without such evidence being prosecuted, ”said Sec. Roque.