Journalists in prison as of December 1, 2008


El Malick Seck, 24 Heures Chrono
IMPRISONED: August 28, 2008

Seck, editor of the private daily 24 Heures Chrono, was arrested the day his newspaper published a front-page editorial alleging that President Abdoulaye Wade and his son Karim, a special adviser, were implicated in a money-laundering case.

Neither Wade nor his son responded to the story, which was based on purported allegations made by an Ivorian politician in 2006, according to local journalists. No official allegation or charge had been made against Wade or his son.

Seck was held for questioning for five days and charged with five counts of penal code offenses including "offense to the head of state," "publishing false news," and "acts breaking peace and causing grave political disturbances."

On September 12, a judge sentenced Seck to three years in prison and banned the paper from circulation for a period of three months. Seck was denied bail pending an appeal and was being held at Dakar's civil prison.

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