The Press and Society Institute (IPYS) expressed this Saturday, June 25, its rejection of the bill announced yesterday by the head of the Ministerial Cabinet, Aníbal Torres, which sanctions the dissemination of confidential information in a criminal proceeding through the media.
In a statement, he indicated that the Government’s intention would affect all kinds of tax investigations, which he considered “unconstitutional”and would rather correspond to “an attempt to prevent the numerous accused of the regime from being reported”.
He recalled that last February he issued a statement rejecting the bill approved by the Justice Commission of Congress, raising the possibility that journalists could be sentenced to prison for reporting on testimonies of effective collaborators before the Public Ministry.
The IPYS noted at the time that published information of this type mostly comes from confidential sources and is in the public interestwhich protects its dissemination with the right to freedom of information.
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“IPYS understands the importance of maintaining the confidentiality of investigative processes in the justice system, but the eventual punishment for the violation of this confidentiality must be directed at those who are obliged to protect it and not at the journalistic messenger”he said in his statement.
The institute also underlined that no fiscal investigation has established responsibilities for the violation of the reservation of effective collaboration processes despite the constant questioning against this figure.
“The secrecy of investigations should not be total but case by case, and leaks should not be punished, not even interested or partial, but those that generate demonstrable damage to the objectives of the process or the safety of those investigated”narrowed down
Project to prevent leaks
As you remember, the prime minister, Hannibal Torresannounced that the Executive has presented a bill to Congress to penalize those who disseminate tax information on criminal cases with up to four years in prison.
“A bill has been approved that creates the crime of disseminating confidential information in criminal investigations. The criminal investigation in its preliminary stage is reserved. It stops being reserved when it goes to the oral trial. There it is public and there is no reservation”justified.
“Currently, it happens that in investigations, confidential information is quickly made known to the public, sometimes selecting information with the purpose of imputing the commission of crimes. That shouldn’t happen.”he added.
It should be noted that this bill had already been announced on June 13 by the Minister of Justice and Human Rights, Félix Chero, who declared that what is sought with the measure is “to protect” the presumption of innocence of the investigated.