Five judgments for the sake of journalists
A Report done by Forum for Development and Human Rights Dialogue (FDHRD) on five judgments issued in journalistic cases – Egypt 1st April 2009
Under the frameworks of the interest of FDHRD in the freedom of journalism as one of the basic pillars for enjoying the freedom of opinion and expression, FDHRD has monitored and documented the issuance of 5 judgments in journalistic case and these judgments were characterized by being not harsh and they were not criminal judgments ( Imprisonment-Fine).
This case is filed by Younes Millad Younest as a claimant against both Nabil Mohamed Tala’at Mohamed and Mohamed Mostafa Bakri as defendants in case no. 13327 of 2008 at Kasr El Neel misdemeanor court at the constituency of Al Arbe’a. According to El Ide’aa newspaper, issue no.595 on 30/8/2008, the problem started when the Weekly El Esbo’o newspaper published in its seventh page an article named “Forcing the workers of the Arab Company for Agricultural Projects to sign receipts”. This article included statements that the claimant considered them as a kind of libeling and slandering against him and therefore the claimant filed a criminal case against the defendants. On 25/3/2009, the court issued a judgment stating that it is not specialized in hearing such kind of cases and it referred the case to the Public Prosecution to refer it again to the competent and specialized criminal court.
The second case is filed by the claimant against Hassan Sa’d Mohamed El Rashidi and Mostafa Mohamed Mahmud Ali as defendants in case no. 12408 of 2008 at Kasr El Neel misdemeanor Court, at the constituency of Al Arbe’a. According to El Ide’aa newspaper, issue no.869 in its twelfth page at the column of Red handed on 23/9/2008, the problem started when El Masaeya Newspaper issued an article entitled “ block notes whose identity are unknown and they are sold in the market”. This article included statements that the claimant considered as a kind of libeling and slandering against him. Therefore, the claimant filed a case requesting charging and punishing the defendants in accordance with articles no. 871, 178 biss, 187,195,302,306, and 303 of the penal code and article no,276 biss of the criminal procedures code. On 25/2/2009. However,mthe court acquitted the two defendants and rejected the civil case as well as it compelled the claimant to pay 50L.E as the lawyers’ fees.
This case is filed by one of the citizens against both Khalil dahi Khalil , the head of the board of directors of El Lewa’a El Arabi Newspaper and against the head of the Journalists’ Syndicate in case no. 11189 of 2008. This case is filed at Kasr El Neel misdemeanor Court, misdemeanor court at the constituency of Al Arbe’a. According to El Ide’aa newspaper on 26/6/2008 , the problem started when the claimant filed case no.2439 of 2006 civil case at Giza, and she requested compensation because the first defendant published false news which is considered by the claimant as a libeling and slandering against her. Also, when the messenger of the court went to the premises of El Lewa’a El Arabi Newspaper to give a copy of the filed case to the defendant, it is discovered that the first defendant is not working as a journalist in this newspaper but he works as reporter there. Therefore, the claimant filed another case that was heard by the court and then on 25/2/2009 the court issued an acquittal judgment and refused the civil case submitted by the claimant as well as it obliged the claimant to pay 50 L.E as lawyers’ fees.
The North Primary Court of El Giza issued a judgment on 30 March 2009 to refuse the civilian and criminal case filed by Abdo Mohamed Ali Hendawi , case no. 145 of 2008( Misdemeanor El Agouza) against Adel Hamouda, the editor-in-chief of El fagr Newspaper an Naseef Kazman , the head of the board of directors of El Fagr Newspaper, Tala’at Taham, an editor in this newspaper, and Heba Ghareeb, an editor at this newspaper. The judgment acquitted all the defendants. The claimant filed a judicial case against the four defendants accusing them of libeling and slandering him in an article published at El fagr Newspaper on 11th August 2008 entitled ‘ Brokers who assist female Egyptian minors to travel abroad). The claimant said that his name was mentioned in this article as one of the brokers.
The North Primary Court of El Giza on 29 March 2009 refused the case filed by Fadl Mo’yed el Kassem, the president of El Emra satellite Channel , case no. 1676 of 2009 ( Misdemeanor El Agouza) against Adel Hamouda, the editor-in-chief of El fag Newspaper an Naseef Kazman , the head of the board of directors of El Fagr Newspaper , Heba Ghareeb, an editor at this newspaper, and Tala’at Taha El Azb, a citizen. The claimant accused the defendants of libeling and slandering him through publishing an article at El Fagr newspaper in its issue no.176 issued on 27 October 2008 and this article is entitled “ a teacher accused El Emara channel and its head, Mr. Fadl El Kassem of deceit).