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Angola: Rafael Marques faces 15 further libel charges for reporting human rights abuses in "Blood Diamonds" book

Angolan journalist faces further charges over blood diamonds claims,  25 March 2015

…The defamation trial of…[Rafael Marques]…has been adjourned after the prosecution announced a slew of additional charges against him…[He]…had been due to face nine charges of criminal defamation when he appeared in court in the Angolan capital, Luanda...[H]is lawyers were told that he now faced a further 15 libel charges arising from the publication of his 2012 book, Blood Diamonds: Corruption and Torture in Angola…The judge’s decision to hold proceedings in camera – behind closed doors, with the press and public excluded – prompted scuffles outside the court between the journalist’s supporters and police...It said several protesters…were arrested…[T]he judge adjourned the case until 23 April to give Marques’s lawyers time to prepare their case in light of the new charges. If found guilty, he could face nine years in prison and a libel bill for £800,000.  Marques has alleged that the generals and company directors were complicit in the violence because they were profiting from blood diamonds and did nothing to stop the bloodshed.…The journalist has described the legal situation as “Kafkasesque”...Marques said the trial would make him stronger. He later told the Observer: “It will show Angolans there is nothing to fear and challenge them to hold the authorities to account.”

Part of the following stories

Angola: Journalist Rafael Marques faces defamation charges over work exposing abuses in diamond industry

Angola: Rafael Marques trial resumes over book on abuses in diamond mining - Companies urge govt. to drop charges