Among the journalists who should have been spied on via the Pegasus software is Omar Radi in Morocco. The investigative journalist, known for his investigations into corruption, was sentenced by Omar Radi on Monday 19 July to six years in prison by a court in Casablanca. He was charged with two separate counts, but was convicted jointly.
An accusation of espionage and an accusation of rape. Omar Radi declares his innocence since the beginning of his legal problems and claims that he is being reprimanded for his views critical of Moroccan power. He has already spent a year in custody and has just turned 35 years in prison.
His supporters expressed their anger in the courtroom.
“This is further evidence that the Moroccan government is crushing all that remains of independent journalism in Morocco and intimidating the few journalists who dare to speak and who are still there,” Eric said. Goldstein, Deputy Head of the Middle East and North Africa. on Human Rights Watch.
Omar Radi is on the list of journalists potentially targeting the Pegasus software, according to the survey published by the international media consortium. But already more than a year ago, Amnesty International claimed that Omar Radi’s phone had been hacked.
#Morocco court gives journalist #freeOmar Radi six years in prison for rape and espionage, the latest in a series of unfair trials based on dubious accusations aimed at sniffing out an independent voice and intimidating the few who remain in the country. https://t.co/hpZHvcsG68
– Eric Goldstein (@goldsteinricky) July 19, 2021
On Monday, another Moroccan journalist, also in his thirties, Imad Stitou, who came to testify in favor of Omar Radi in the rape case, was charged and sentenced to one year in prison.
These convictions are in addition to other cases of rape or sexual abuse for which journalists in Morocco have been prosecuted and imprisoned. Last week, Soulaimane Raissouni, editor-in-chief of an independent newspaper, was sentenced to five years in prison for “sexual abuse”. He has been on hunger strike for three months.
Read also: Pegasus: Morocco is attached to using spyware, especially against journalists