Panamanian Journalist Carlos Núñez Arrested for Libel
Tuesday, June 29 2010 @ 05:28 PM UTC
Contributed by: Don Winner
Auto Pilot: I have no idea what the facts are regarding the conviction of Carlos Núñez by the Fourteenth Criminal Court and the case from 1998 and Bocas del Toro. The conviction was handed down in September 2009 and since Carlos Núñez was not in custody his name and identification (cedula) number appeared in the "Pele Police" system. The police officers simply did their jobs and arrested him. It seems to me Carlos Núñez's lawyers should now appeal the conviction and he should immediately be released, pending the appeal. I suspect that is exactly what the judge will decide in the hearing this afternoon. However, this arrest is an example of how the government is working to improve the security of the country - on auto pilot. Forget for a moment that this case deals with a 70 year old journalist, a story he wrote twelve years ago, and his conviction in absentia. The "system" found this guy like a needle in a haystack and hauled him in. Want more "security?" This is what you get. The system doesn't care what he was convicted for, the facts of the case, how old the guy is, the fact that he's a journalist, or what have you. It only cares that the system says "arrest that dude" so that's exactly what the police officers did in this case. When it's all said and done, I doubt this conviction will stand, and I expect that Carlos Núñez will be released. Let's see how it plays out over time. (And as a footnote, I'm certain Ricardo Martinelli has no clue about any of this ... it's 100% judicial system stuff.)
Copyright 2010 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.