Vicky Dávila: Court reverses conviction for video publication – Investigation – Justice

(You may be interested in: The Ministry of the Interior is ordered to disclose a sentence on the violation of Wayú children).

The process occurred after the publication on the radio station La FM on February 16, 2016 of a recording of a conversation of a sexual nature between the then congressman and the police cadet, Anyelo Palacio.

The plaintiffs pointed out that “due to the questioned broadcast, all the plaintiffs were the center of attention and public ridicule at a national and international level, they still suffer from overwhelm, stigmatization, discrimination, productive damage and
emotional”.

The 22nd Civil Circuit Court declared the defendants civilly liable for the moral damages caused to the plaintiffs and ordered the payment of money to several people in the Ferro family nucleus.

The decision was appealed and came up for review before the Superior Court of Bogotá.

Dávila indicated in his arguments that the judgment of first instance “directly violated article 20 of the Political Constitution by wrongly weighing the existing tension between the fundamental rights to a good name and freedom of expression, information and the press. “.

It also indicated that the ruling “violates article 73 of the Constitution, according to which ‘journalistic activity shall enjoy protection to guarantee its freedom and professional independence’, since what was decided constitutes an incentive for journalists to self-censor their content to avoid the risks derived from their professional practice”.

He also pointed out that the country’s legal system “establishes a presumption
of primacy of freedom of expression, in cases of conflict with other rights such as privacy, good name and honor, ‘unless a harmful intent or negligence is demonstrated by presenting false, partial, incomplete or inaccurate facts that violate or threaten fundamental rights.

And he considered that the purpose of the disclosure was not made with the malicious intent of the journalist to harm a particular person or his family.since the video was announced by the Attorney General’s Office as evidence in the context of a disciplinary investigation of a high-ranking official.

“Under such premises, the publication with sexual content is justified because it was physical evidence of what was being investigated: the formation and operation of a network that violated the sexual freedom of subordinates. Its broadcast was not isolated but rather preceded by a previous methodology and its content was not dismissed and, although
It includes an intimate aspect, aspects of public interest also fall on it, so the right to freedom of expression must prevail,” reads the ruling.

For the Chamber, the broadcasting of the recording “does not constitute a rude and
unjustified to the intimate sphere of those involved, as long as it was endured in the public exposure to which they were subjected for the performance of their function”.

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