Supreme Court allows Maria Ressa to travel overseas

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 15 2023 04:13 PM

Rappler CEO Maria Ressa arrives at the Manila City Hall for the scheduled handing down of the verdict of Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 46 on the cyber libel case filed against her and researcher-writer Reynaldo Santos, Jr on June 15, 2020. Angie De Silva, ABS-CBN News/File
Rappler CEO Maria Ressa arrives at the Manila City Hall for the scheduled handing down of the verdict of Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 46 on the cyber libel case filed against her and researcher-writer Reynaldo Santos, Jr on June 15, 2020. Angie De Silva, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — The Supreme Court has allowed journalist Maria Ressa to travel overseas over a 20-day period, its public information office said Wednesday.

The high court gave Ressa 20 days to travel abroad, or from March 13 to April 1, 2023, to attend several speaking engagements.

The Rappler CEO and Nobel Peace Prize winner will travel to Canada, France, South Korea, and the United States, according to the Supreme Court PIO.

"In a Resolution dated March 6, 2023, the Court’s First Division resolved to grant the Fourth Motion for Permission to Travel Abroad of petitioner Ressa," it said.

CONDITION

Ressa was ordered to travel on a cash bond of P100,000 she previously posted, pursuant to an earlier resolution of the court.

She should inform the court in writing about her return to the Philippines within 5 days from her arrival.

The Supreme Court also told Ressa — who still faces 3 other criminal cases, including a cyber libel conviction currently on appeal, for which she could face nearly seven years in prison — "to observe the sub judice rule and to refrain from making any comment on or discussing in public her case and other related matters."

Earlier this year, Ressa and her media company Rappler Holdings Corporation were acquitted by the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) on 4 counts of tax-related charges. 

The CTA First Division found Ressa and RHC not guilty on three counts of failure to supply correct information and one count of tax evasion, amounting to P141 million worth of taxes, including surcharge and interest.

—with a report from Agence France-Presse

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