2 critics of Swaziland government convicted

2 critics of Swaziland government convicted

Posted: Updated:
  • NationalMore>>

  • NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules

    NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:52 AM EDT2014-07-31 06:52:16 GMT
    The NCAA has agreed to settle a class-action head injury lawsuit by creating a $70 million fund to diagnose thousands of current and former college athletes to determine if they suffered brain trauma playing...More >>
    The NCAA agreed on Tuesday to help athletes with head injuries in a proposed settlement of a class-action lawsuit that college sports' governing body touted as a major step forward but that critics say doesn't go...More >>
  • 5 food writers subpoenaed in 'pink slime' lawsuit

    5 food writers subpoenaed in 'pink slime' lawsuit

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:51 AM EDT2014-07-31 06:51:12 GMT
    Several food writers, including a New York Times reporter, have been subpoenaed as part of a company's $1.2 billion defamation lawsuit against ABC related to the network's coverage of a meat product derided...More >>
    Several food writers, including a New York Times reporter, have been subpoenaed by a meat producer as part of its $1.2 billion defamation lawsuit against ABC in regards to the network's coverage of a beef product...More >>
  • Century-old pipe break points to national problem

    Century-old pipe break points to national problem

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:35 AM EDT2014-07-31 06:35:13 GMT
    The quiet summer campus of UCLA found itself suddenly steeped in water and chaos after a major water pipe burst and spewed some eight million gallons, stranding people in parking garages and flooding the...More >>
    The rupture of a nearly century-old water main that ripped a 15-foot hole through Sunset Boulevard and turned a swath of the University of California, Los Angeles, into a mucky mess points to the risks and expense many...More >>
By CHRISTOPHER TORCHIA
Associated Press

JOHANNESBURG (AP) - Two government critics in Swaziland were found guilty of contempt of court on Thursday in a case that focused attention on human rights in the landlocked African kingdom.

Human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko and Bheki Makhubu, editor of Swaziland's The Nation magazine, had been charged after publishing articles in which they lamented alleged threats to judicial independence.

The two critics are considering an appeal, said Sipho Gumedze, another human rights lawyer in Swaziland. While the judge deferred sentencing, such a conviction can carry a sentence of several months in jail and a fine.

"It's unfortunate, but the struggle should continue, regardless," said Maseko's wife, Tenele.

Maseko, who studied law at American University's Washington College of Law, and Makhubu, the journalist, were jailed in March. In the articles that landed them in trouble, they criticized the prosecution of a government vehicle inspector who was arrested after impounding a vehicle used by a top judge.

In court documents, a judge defined contempt of court as the violation of the dignity of a judicial body or interfering with the administration of justice, and noted that "the right to freedom of expression is not absolute."

Swaziland is ruled by King Mswati III, Africa's last absolute monarch. The country held parliamentary elections last year, but many international observers said the process was a sham designed to prolong the king's grip on power.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Powered by WorldNow

1306 N. Broadway NE Knoxville,
Tennessee 37917

Telephone: 865.637.NEWS(6397)
Fax: 865.525.4091
Email: newsroom@wate.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Young Broadcasting of Knoxville, Inc. A Media General Company.