Ecuadoran court rejects President Correa's pardon of journalists accused of defamation

Despite Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa's pardon, a court decided to move forward with the ruling against two Ecuadoran journalists accused of defamation and reject the presidential pardon, reported the Ecuadoran organization Fundamedios.

In February, journalists Juan Carlos Calderón and Christian Zurita, authors of the book “Big Brother,” were ordered to pay $2 million for alleged moral damages against Correa. After international criticism, the Ecuadoran president pardoned the journalists, and also commuted a similar sentence against the newspaper El Universo, in which four journalists had been sentenced to three years of prison and a $40 million fine.

The court ruled that the lawsuit cannot be closed because “the pardon does not put an end" to the initial defamation, reported the Public Agency of News from Ecuador and South America reported

According to the journalists' lawyer, Ramiro Aguilar, when the president offered the pardon, his lawyers lawyers already new that the court would reject the pardon.