Broadcaster Lastimosa files MR for Appeals Court decision on libel case
VETERAN broadcaster and columnist Leo Lastimosa has filed a motion for reconsideration on the Court of Appeals decision affirming his libel conviction, which he brought to the Appeals Court three years ago.
“We have filed our motion for reconsideration,” said Lastimosa.
“I am sincerely hoping that the Court of Appeals can see beyond the might and influence of the complainant and the helplessness of the respondent and consider the implication of curtailing the right to freedom of expression. If they sustain the lower court, they will discourage citizens from challenging the powers that be by writing another Noli or Fili,” he said.
The appellate court’s Special 19th Division affirmed the ruling of retired Regional Trial Court judge Raphael Yrastoza who found Lastimosa guilty of alluding defamatory remarks to former Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, who is now occupying a seat in the house of representatives.
In the CA decision penned by associate justice Edgardo delos Santos, it was pointed out that Garcia’s identity was sufficiently established as the libeled party in Lastimosa’s “defamatory article”, referring to the broadcaster’s “Si Doling Kawatan” column in The Freeman published last June 29, 2007.
The article referred to a fish vendor called “Doling Kawatan” where he criticized alleged irregularities in the construction of the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC).
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