Guide asks Mexican journalists to remember suspects are "innocent until proven guilty"
Mexican journalist Marco Lara Klahr released the book "No More 'Payers': a Guide to Journalism on the Presumption of Innocence and Criminal Justice Reform" to encourage Mexican journalists to respect the presumption of innocence when writing about suspects of violent crimes.
The guide contains real examples to illustrate responsible coverage based on the presumption of innocence, according to the website Ciudadanía Express.
Often, Mexican authorities tell the press that suspects are involved in organized crime before the trial begins. They also tend to suggest that bodies found in areas of violent crime are also involved in organized crime.
"If the government is so good at declaring the guilt of dead bodies within minutes, why don't they do it when they're alive and punish them under the law," Lara told Radio Fórmula. The journalist added that only 1 percent of the crimes committed in Mexico are punished.
"It's important that journalists not become echo chambers for government institutions and inform the public without harming the human rights of those they write about," Lara said.
Download the guide here.
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