A 52-year-old Bahraini journalist is being prosecuted for allegedly writing for a newspaper abroad without government permission.
He should have had official permission from the Information Ministry, the Lower Criminal Court heard.
The defendant, a journalist for nearly 30 years, is charged with illegally working as a correspondent for a Kuwaiti newspaper.
He admitted at an earlier hearing writing for the Kuwaiti paper, but told the court he had no idea that he needed ministry permission.
The ministry sent a complaint to the public prosecution that the journalist was acting as a correspondent for the newspaper without obtaining official permission.
It said it had repeatedly warned him to stop sending articles abroad without permission.
He has violated the Press and Publication Law of 2002, said the ministry.
The defendant worked illegally as a correspondent for the paper from March 8, 2002 to February 28, 2003, says the prosecution.
He told the court he stopped sending articles abroad for some time when he learned he could be prosecuted if he did not have official permission.
“I asked officials at the Information Ministry about the requirements one needs to practice this profession of becoming a journalist and a correspondent here in Bahrain,” he said.
“They told me that they wanted a letter from the editor-in-chief of the Kuwaiti newspaper requesting the Information Ministry to register me as its correspondent in Bahrain.”
He said the paper sent the letter as requested and he continued as a correspondent.
The court adjourned the case until September 12, to find out whether the ministry had given permission or not.
GDN :: Mohammed Aslam :: 30 May 2005