Dominican censorship, judge jails TV host after defamation trial opens
Reporters Without Borders calls for the immediate release of TV presenter José Agustín Silvestre de los Santos, also known as “Gajo,” who was arrested on a judge’s order when he appeared in court on 27 May at the start of his trial on a criminal defamation charge in the eastern city of La Romana.


The judge ordered that Silvestre be held for three months, while the trial proceeds, but said he could be released on bail of 200,000 Dominican pesos (5,250 dollars). Silvestre was roughed up by security guards in the courtroom. The trial is due to resume tomorrow.

The host of the programme “La Voz de la Verdad” on Cana TV, a regional station, Silvestre is accused of insulting and defaming La Romana prosecutor José Polanco Ramírez by accusing him during one of his programmes of links to drug traffickers. Shots were fired at his home after the programme.

“This detention order is tantamount to passing sentence before a verdict has been reached,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Pre-trial detention can only be considered when there is a danger that the defendant may try to elude justice. But that does not apply in this case, because Silvestre came to the court of his own volition.

“This effective jail sentence poses a serious threat to press freedom, especially as the country is in the process of making it impossible for people to be sent to prison for the views they express. A bill to this effect was submitted to the National Assembly in September 2008 but has not yet been debated and voted.”

The Silvestre case has shocked the Dominican media. Aurelio Henríquez Mendoza, the president of the Dominican Association of Journalists (CDP), told the press that Silvestre’s rights are being violated. He also reported that Silvestre has been placed in solitary confinement.



Here you will find many more cases about attacks and murders of Dominican journalists

Go back | Date: 01 Jun 2011
Proud to be the most
factual DR news site!
We keep the stories
& investigations alive
that cozenage groups
want to hide or forget
Quick Search – All Articles
Video about DR's Sugar Barons
The horrible conditions of Haitian sugar cane workers in the Dominican Republic

The truth about Leonel
Must Watch This Video About President Leonel's DRUG CONNECTIONS!!

Top Stories
Most Read Stories
"This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of criminal justice, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research or any other non-commercial purposes."
Please support our work
1000 of hours are being
spend yearly on collecting
articles, investigations and
answering emails.