Trillanes sues blogger for libel over ‘drug lord’ tag
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV filed on Wednesday before the Pasay City Regional Trial Court a libel complaint against pro-Duterte blogger Rey Joseph “RJ” Nieto for posting on social media an article where United States President Donald Trump allegedly called the legislator a “drug lord.”
The article was posted on Nieto’s Facebook page “The Thinking Pinoy” on October 31, 2017 with the title “Trump calls Trillanes a Drug Lord.”
In his post, Nieto cited a purported report where Trump allegedly named Trillanes – a staunch critic of President Rodrigo Duterte – as a “narco.”
Nieto even added in his post: “Does Trump’s government know something?”
In his complaint, Trillanes pointed out: “Having posted in the Facebook account of Respondent Nieto in the internet, this malicious imputation was published far and wide and all over the world.”
As of November 21, 2017, Trillanes said, the article has received 62,000 reactions and was shared 15,759 times.
“The claim of respondent Nieto constitutes ‘fake news’,” according to Trillanes even adding that the social media post failed to cite the news outfit that purportedly interviewed Trump.
In fact, he noted, The Philippine Star verified Nieto’s article and came out with a news piece titled “No Trump mention of Trillanes.”
“Being a very vocal and staunch critic of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, of whom Respondent Nieto is a self-confessed diehard supporter and defender, Respondent Nieto’s post was clearly made solely for the purpose of besmirching my reputation and maligning my name,” said Trilanes.
“Needless to state, since the Respondent Nieto caused the publication of the derogatory post through the electronic medium (i.e., using a computer system), respondent is clearly guilty of the cybercrime offense of LIBEL, as defined and penalized under the Cybercrime Prevention Act,” he added.
Trillanes is seeking payment of P2 million for moral and exemplary damages, and P250,000 in attorney’s fees. /kga
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