By Ingrid Bachmann
A judge in Mexico City ruled that Contralínea magazine be fined for publishing stories about contracts awarded by state-owned oil giant Pemex to private companies, stating the matter “is not of public interest,” SDP Noticias reports.
Contralínea’s previous stories about Pemex contracts resulted in several lawsuits against the magazine and its editor, Miguel Badillo, and harassment of its employees. Badillo, who was arrested in early 2009 and charged with “insult of authorities,” sought protection from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
The recent ruling says the magazine is guilty of ”moral damage” to the Pemex contractors criticized in the stories, Hoy Tamaulipas reports. The value of the fine has not been reported, but the decision includes Contralínea’s editor and two journalists, Ana Lilia Pérez and Nancy Flores.
Contralínea disputes the judge’s ruling that the information about the government’s acquisitions and contracts are not of public interest, calling it “an aberration of the right to information and of transparency laws.”
Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.