Guatemala journalist goes on trial in cash laundering case

GUATEMALA CITY — The president of a Guatemalan investigative newspaper went on trial Tuesday on cash laundering costs in a case media observers have criticized as politically motivated.

José Rubén Zamora, 66, arriving on the court docket in handcuffs, advised reporters he was a “political prisoner” and anticipated to be convicted as a result of he had no confidence within the court docket.

Zamora, chief of El Periodico newspaper, is an award winner whose work has been acknowledged internationally.

Zamora has been held in jail since his arrest final 12 months. Prosecutors accuse him of cash laundering associated to a deposit of about $30,000 he requested another person to make for him. The cash was a donation to maintain the newspaper operating, however the donor needed to stay nameless, Zamora has mentioned.

El Periodico was identified for aggressive reporting on authorities corruption. It was pressured to cease publishing its print version and went fully on-line.

The U.S. authorities has sharply criticized the weakening of anti-corruption efforts in Guatemala underneath President Alejandro Giammattei. U.S. authorities cancelled the visa of the nation’s final prime prosecutor after various anti-corruption officers fled the nation underneath risk of prosecution.

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