José Rubén Zamora granted house arrest in Guatemala, but will remain detained

A Guatemalan court has granted house arrest to journalist José Rubén Zamora Marroquín, who has been imprisoned since 2022 for criticizing the government of Alejandro Giammattei for corruption. Despite the court’s decision, Zamora Marroquín will remain in prison due to facing two other judicial proceedings for alleged obstruction of justice by the Public Ministry.

The Ninth Sentencing Court of the Guatemalan Judicial Branch, presided over by Judge Veronica Ruiz, approved the house arrest based on Inter-American Court of Human Rights provisions and local regulations. Judge Ruiz stated that there is no risk of flight or intervention by Zamora Marroquín in his ongoing case for alleged money laundering.

Zamora Marroquín received the Recognition of Excellence of the Gabo 2024 Award the day before the hearing, highlighting his dedication to exposing corruption in Guatemala. The journalist expressed gratitude for the award and dedicated it to his colleagues in the region facing similar challenges.

Despite being acquitted in a previous case due to trial irregularities, Zamora Marroquín remains in prison at the Mariscal Zavala military barracks in Guatemala City. The legal proceedings against him have been marred by irregularities, including restrictions on presenting evidence in his favor and changes in legal representation.

Zamora Marroquín’s case has attracted attention for his outspoken criticisms of government corruption and the challenges he has faced in his legal battles. As he continues to fight for justice, his story serves as a reminder of the importance of press freedom and accountability in society.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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