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The prison sentence of journalist José Rubén Zamora Marroquín in Guatemala was abolished

The prison sentence of journalist José Rubén Zamora Marroquín in Guatemala was abolished

Journalist and founder of the morning newspaper El Periodico, José Rubén Zamora, in a file photo (EFE/Edwin Bercián)

Appeals Chamber Guatemala Cancel the sentence issued against the journalist Jose Ruben Zamora Marroquín And he ordered Repeating the judicial process In which he was convicted of money laundering last June.

Ramon Zamora, Zamora Marroquín’s son, confirmed on Friday that the ruling issued yesterday by the Second Appeals Chamber of the Guatemalan Judiciary had been overturned.

“We hope that we can now get a fair trial in which his right to defense is respected,” Zamora’s son Marroquin said.

The communicator was 66 years old He was sentenced to six years in prison on June 12 past, l An alleged money laundering case.

He was arrested on July 29, 2022, just five days after strong accusations of corruption in the media outlet he owned, El Periódico, were made to the current president’s inner circle. Alejandro Giamatti.

The court’s decision comes at the request of the Public Prosecutor’s Office and Zamora Marroquín himself, and forces the journalist to face a new legal process also on charges of extortion and other crimes.

Zamora Marroquin’s arrest in 2022 and conviction in 2023 were strongly criticized nationally and internationally (Reuters/Luis Echeverría)

Zamora Marroquín’s arrest in 2022 and conviction in 2023 were strongly criticized both nationally and internationally.

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The journalist has been one of the most vocal critics of the governments in power since their establishment Newspaper In 1996, with hundreds of corruption investigations.

During the criminal proceedings against him, Zamora denounced Marroquin Violation of your right to defense He had to change his lawyers seven times, as four of his defenders ended up accused of committing various crimes.

In 2021, Zamora received a marroquín from the King of Spain, Felipe VI, Outstanding Media Award in Ibero-Americanfor investigative work that Newspaper It remained in place for nearly 30 years, until it closed on May 15.

Two years ago, the caller publicly asserted that Giamatti, the Attorney General and the Director of Public Prosecutions, Consuelo BorrasThey will try to fabricate a case against him to silence his media investigations.

Porras has been under strong pressure since October 2, when thousands of people demonstrated in Guatemala to demand his resignation, on charges of trying to alter the election results this year.

In his last court appearance before his sentencing in June, Zamora reiterated that he is innocent And that his rights had been violated, especially his rights to defense and due process, to the point that he met with his court-appointed defense attorney minutes before the trial began.

“I ask the court to issue an acquittal and give me my freedom because the prosecution was unable to prove (the accusations),” Zamora said.

(With information from EFE)