06 Jul 2018 Lvl. 2
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Alert created on: 06 Jul 2018 Spain

Spanish Politician Seeks to Jail Journalists who Uncovered Fraud Scandal

Source of threatNon-state
CategoryOther acts having chilling effects on media freedom
Partner IPI
No state reply yet
Partner IPI
Cristina Cifuentes, the former president of the Community of Madrid, has filed papers in court seeking jail sentences for two journalists who revealed her alleged involvement in a fraud scandal. The complaint accuses Eldiario.es founder and Editor-in-Chief Ignacio Escolar and investigative journalist Raquel Ejerique of aggravated disclosure of confidential information (descubrimiento y revelación de secretos). The criminal complaint seeks to jail Escolar and Ejerique for up to five years. It accuses the pair of having acted “blindly” in pursuit of a “valuable exclusive”. Eldiario.es launched a series of reports on March 21, 2018, written by Ejerique, explaining how Cifuentes had allegedly obtained her master’s degree from Rey Juan Carlos University through fraud. The information published by the news site generated great public interest in Spain and put political pressure on Cifuentes, who eventually stepped down several weeks later following an unrelated shoplifting scandal. The reports also prompted a criminal investigation into Cifuentes for falsifying public documents and bribery.
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