Ecuador Judge Orders Journalist to Pay Up US$140,000 in President Libel Suit
Journalist Fernando Villavicencio has been fined USD $140,000 after a judge in a defamation lawsuit sided with Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa.
Villavicencio and former legislator Clever Jimenez were sentenced to one year in prison in 2014, as well as Carlos Figueroa. They were accused of making accusations against Correa and his administration without evidence in relation to the President being hospitalized in Quito amid police revolts.
Those convicted went personally to the prosecutor’s office, where they were charged with “having moved to the facilities of a university, where they planned their rescue to then return to the hospital and thus free him.”
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The attorney did not accept the complaint and described it as malicious. As a result, Correa decided to take other measures and bring them to justice.
The journalist, through his Twitter account, said Judge Edwin Cevallos was forcing him to pay the fine in three days; if not, the government planned to confiscate his property.
Additionally, they condemned him for presenting a balance of his property with assets and liabilities, which he is prohibited from administering . He was also banned from leaving the country without prior authorization.
Ecuavisa was able capture some statements of the accused journalist in which he said, “I hope that the judge goes and takes the bed, plasma TV, computers, the cradle of my son and delivers them to President Correa.”