Manila court allows Ressa to travel abroad; reschedules her arraignment for cyber libel to April 16 instead

(Eagle News) — A Manila court has allowed Rappler’s executive editor Maria Ressa to travel abroad in March and April.

In granting Ressa’s urgent motion to travel outside the country from March 15 to 29, April 2 to 14, and April 21 to 28, Branch 46 Judge Rainelda Estacio-Montesa said Ressa’s position in the media outfit “diminished the risk of flight.”

The judge, however, said Ressa should post a P500,000 travel bond to ensure she would really return.

This was reduced to P300,000 upon Ressa camp’s motion.

Ressa was also told to stick to the itinerary she wrote in her motion.

The court also reset the arraignment of Ressa, originally scheduled for April 12, to April 16, at 8:30 a.m.

Ressa and former Rappler reporter Reynaldo Santos Jr. are facing a cyber libel case filed by businessman Wilfredo Keng over an article published on the site in 2012 and edited in 2014.

The article had described Keng as a controversial businessman, with “alleged ties” to illegal activities, citing a supposed intelligence report.

Both Ressa and Santos are out on bail.