Monday 25 September 2017

Mauritian editor back in court following collapse

Breda Heffernan

Breda Heffernan

THE Mauritian newspaper editor charged in connection with the publication of crime-scene photographs of the dead body of Michaela McAreavey was formally charged in court yesterday, following his dramatic collapse the day before.

Imran Hosany, editor of the Mauritian 'Sunday Times', collapsed clutching his chest during an earlier appearance as he waited to be formally charged and was carried from the court.

He was taken to a hospital in the capital Port Louis and remained there overnight.

He was discharged yesterday and taken back to the court, where he was charged with outraging public and religious morality -- an offence that carries a sentence of up to a year in jail.

His lawyer, Akil Bissessur, said Mr Hosany was then released on bail and is due back before the court on Monday.

"He was bailed and was free to go home, but he chose to go back to the hospital. He had to undergo some tests by heart specialists," he added.

Rejected

Mr Hosany had apologised for publishing crime scene photographs of Ms McAreavey's body, three days after two hotel workers were found not guilty of her murder. The McAreavey and Harte families rejected Mr Hosany's apology.

Yesterday, a journalists' union in Mauritius issued a public statement in support of Mr Hosany, saying local and international media regularly print photographs of murders.

Meanwhile, Brendan McMahon, the Irish ambassador to Mauritius, met Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam and Foreign Minister Arvin Boolell in Port Louis yesterday.

A statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs said that Mr McMahon was told that a judicial inquiry would be established to examine the case and a new police team will carry on the investigation.

The statement added that the Government would be happy to consider any approach from the Mauritian authorities for assistance in a fresh probe.

Irish Independent

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