HFHR wants to join in the action brought by Bogdan Wróblewski
The 8 October 2010 issue of the Gazeta Wyborcza daily featured an article titled ‘Journalists targeted by secret services'(Dziennikarze na celowniku służb specjalnych’) by Wojciech Czuchowski.
The article indicated that between 2005 and 2007 secret services and the Police collected data on phone calls made by prominent journalists. ‘The CBA took interest in billing information of Bogdan Wróblewski. The Bureau asked to be delivered records of his contacts from the last six months, that is from when he wrote about high-profile and scandalous operations of the CBA, including the detention of the cardiologist Mirosław G.’, read the article. In response to the findings of the article, Gazeta Wyborcza journalist Bogdan Wróblewski reported his suspicion of a crime and the Circuit Prosecutor’s Office in Warszawa launched an investigation into the matter.
In August 2011 Bogdan Wróblewski pressed charges against the Head of CBA for the infringement of personal interests through the unlawful collection of telecommunications data. Mr Wróblewski believes that the CBA infringed the freedom of communication, informational autonomy and, above all, journalist-source confidentiality.
‘There is no place for the surveillance of journalists in a democratic state ruled by law. This is the foundation of the freedom of speech and investigative journalism’, says Adam Bodnar, Deputy President of the Board of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights. ‘This case is a precedent because for the first time a journalist has filed an action against the state for an unlawful practice of collecting and reviewing billing information, which undoubtedly limited Mr Wróblewski’s professional freedom. Such incidents must be met with a response aiming at safeguarding our own constitutional rights’, adds Mr Bodnar.
The petitioner is represented by Maciej Ślusarek, attorney-at-law.