maria russa, philippine journalist, and nobel laureate, acquitted of tax evasion charges
On Wednesday, in a Philippine court, Maria Ressa a Nobel laureate and journalist was released from all the claims of Holdings Corporation of tax evasion charges. The company that she owns the news site, co-founded accused of tax evasion in 2012.
The many advocates of press freedom used this incident as the freedom voices, they used the victory of Russa.
The rapper pointed out that four tax evasion charges were filed in 2018 and all filed by Rodrigo Duterte who is the government of the then-President.
The acquittal of Ressa from the tax evasion case is confirmed by the office of the Court of Tax Appeals. An officer from the clerk’s office had confirmed it.
President and CEO of Rappler Ressa recently published a book named How to Stand Up to a Dictator in which she claims that after Duterte reported about the drugs, she faced very critics and bad illegal reporting by the news agencies for Rappler. The Rappler also deals with many news and online disinformation spreading in the market.
Though let me remind you Ressa is 59 years old and won the Nobel Peace Prize awardees in 2021 with Russian reporter and journalist Dmitry Muratov in an adverse environment. In 2018, she was a defender of the freedom of the press and was named Person of the Year by Time.
President Duterte already criticized the rapper for her coverage of the war on drugs publicly.
Though the Philippine is not at a good place in the Reporters Without Borders index it ranked 147 out of 180. Between 2012 and 2021, there were 34 journalists lost their lives because of reporting and finding truths.
According to Repler, acquittal on Wednesday in tax court leaves only three active legal battles ahead that are pending, including a defamation appeal, a separate tax case, and the SEC case.
However, in a country where the rate of press freedom is low, the announcement of such a decision in which the press gets its due is like a booster dose for journalists and the media world. So, Russa is seeking the eyes of the world!