COBALT successfully represents the Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism “Re:Baltica” in legal proceedings

2022 - 09 - 28

COBALT successfully represented the Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism “Re:Baltica” in legal proceedings related to the article “Mega-donor to pro-Russian party benefits from Magnitsky and Azerbaijani laundromats”published by “Re:Baltica” on 19 March 2019. On 14 September 2022 the Supreme Court’s Action Meeting (the Senate) delivered a decision (Case No C30770419, SKC-649/2022) to refuse to initiate cassation proceedings, therefore upholding the Riga Regional Court’s judgment of 26 November 2021, which dismissed the claim for defamation, retraction of the article and compensation for moral damages in its entirety.

Representation of the Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism “Re:Baltica” before all court instances was ensured by Senior Associate Linda Bīriņa, who comments: “I am very pleased with the judgment, as the result is significant not only for this case, but also for the investigative journalism work as a whole. Investigative journalism methods may not always be able to produce completely irrefutable facts, but the public is also entitled to information and research findings that raise questions about the legality of a person’s actions. The Court held, inter alia, that the applicant’s conduct in not answering the journalists’ questions and not commenting on the transactions had contributed to the context of the publication, the background to which left unanswered questions for the neutral outside reader and spread doubt as to the purpose of the transfers received. Significantly, the court also agreed with the arguments that journalists cannot, under the norms governing the media environment, disclose all sources of information, sometimes including documents that would point to the sources.”

The Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism Re:Baltica is a non-profit organization that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. Founded in August 2011, it focuses on in-depth investigations of socially important issues in the Baltic region, such as corruption, crime, finances, entrepreneurship, health, human rights and disinformation.

Summary of the proceedings published by “Re:Baltica”(available only in Latvian).

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