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Football player presses charges against Il Fatto Quotidiano. Supreme court: there is the right to criticize

Marco Borriello had appealed after the Court of Rome had sentenced for an acquittal. The judge reminds that a public figure is open to criticism

On 15 December 2016, the Supreme Court rejected the appeal lodged by the lawyers of the player Marco Borriello against the judgment of the GUP (judge for the preliminary hearing) of the Court of Rome who, in May 2016, decided “not to proceed for lack of evidence” against the journalist of Il Fatto Quotidiano, Paolo Ziliano, and the chief editor, Antonio Padellaro. The GUP, furthermore, condemned the footballer to pay court costs.

The two journalists had been sued by Mr Borriello for publishing an article in which he was described as a bomber “not in the field but not between the sheets” and also was reminded that the player himself had called the murder of his father at the hands of the Camorra “one unpleasant incident”. The panel of judges felt that the right to criticize was respected, given the fact that Borriello is a well-known public figure, and that “he has himself exposed in the media with the story of his personal affairs” and “cannot expect the oblivion on qualifying facts of his football life.”


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