By Kristine Joy Patag, March 27 2019; Philippine Star

Image Credit to Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — A state prosecutor charged Rappler CEO Maria Ressa and the online news outfit’s board of violation of the Anti-Dummy Law, the seventh case filed against the veteran journalist pending before a local court.

A local prosecutor recommended charges against Ressa and six others over the violation of the Anti-Dummy Law or Commonwealth Act 107 and the Securities and Regulations Code.

Aside from Ressa, other members of Rappler Holdings Corporation facing charges before the Pasig Regional Trial Court Branch 265 are:

  • Manuel Ayala
  • Nico Jose Nolledo
  • Glenda Gloria, managing editor of Rappler
  • James Bitanga
  • Felica Atienza
  • James Velasquez

A copy of the full resolution has yet to be released to the members of the public.

A STAR report said that the case stemmed from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s ruling that ordered the cancellation of the certificate of incorporation of the online news site and Omidyar’s Philippine Depository Receipts.

Rappler is accused of violating the constitutional restrictions on ownership and control of mass media entities because it supposedly received a donation from Omidyar Network, a fund created by eBay founder and entrepreneur Pierre Omidyar.

PDRs are instruments that give foreign investors a passive economic interest in a Philippine company.

The Court of Appeals has ordered to SEC to review Omidyar’s donation, and the legal effect of the “alleged supervening donation” on whether it has mitigated, if not cured, the violation the commission had earlier found.

READ: Appellate court junks Rappler plea to reverse SEC ruling

Rappler said that all of its six board members have paid a bail bond of P90,000 each for the charge of violation of the Anti-Dummy Law, ahead of the issuance of a warrant.

Ressa however has yet to post bail as she is currently out of the country for speaking engagements.

Charges on the violation of the Securities Violation Code, however, have yet to be raffled to a Pasig court. The bail for the said charge is set at P126,000 each.

Pasig RTC 265 set the arraignment and pre-trial of the case on April 10.