Philippine Supreme Court suspends anti-cybercrime law, will deliberate its constitutionality

The Associated Press
Associated Press

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine Supreme Court has suspended implementation of the country's anti-cybercrime law while it decides whether certain provisions violate civil liberties.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said the court issued a temporary restraining order Tuesday stopping the government from enforcing the law signed by President Benigno Aquino III last month.

The law aims to combat Internet crimes such as hacking, identity theft, spamming, cybersex and online child pornography.

Journalists and citizen groups are protesting because the law also doubles the normal penalty for libel committed online and blocks access to websites deemed to violate the law. They fear such provisions will be used by politicians to silence critics.

They say the law also violates freedom of expression and due process.