On the acquittal of Rappler’s tax evasion case


Altermidya Network welcomes the Court of Tax Appeals’ (CTA) decision to acquit Nobel Laureate Maria Ressa and Rappler of the tax evasion charges filed by the Duterte administration.

The charges junked by the CTA are part of what can be described as a textbook example of weaponization of the law against independent media.

While we welcome the junking of the charges, we should highlight that “lawfare” remains in play, with Rappler and Ressa still facing several spurious cases. And on the part of the alternative media, the law has also been brazenly used to file unfounded cases against several community journalists, including Frenchie Mae Cumpio, who has remained in jail for almost three years now for baseless charges.

Today’s acquittal serves as a welcome ray of hope in our continued fight for press freedom. We call on the Philippine media community and all freedom-loving Filipinos to continue resisting attacks against free expression and the people’s right to know.

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