Final Word from Wednesday, November 14, 2018

It is illegal under Swiss law to record a private conversation without the consent of all participants. Under Art. 179 of the Swiss Penal Code (click here for the unofficial English version, or the official French, German or Italian versions), the penalty is up to one year in prison or a fine. The penalty for unlawful entry under Art. 186 is up to three years in prison or a fine. Whether entry on false pretenses with the intent to commit a crime (recording a private conversation without the consent of all participants) constitutes a felony is for prosecutors and courts to say. The publication of illegally obtained information is a crime under Art. 322 and is subject to up to three years in prison or a fine. It is a question for public debate and coalition decision-making whether such possible unlawful behavior by journalists is "abhorrent and repulsive" or whether the public interest in one country overrides from a journalistic and societal standpoint a criminal violation in another. [ Czech Republic criminal breaking TV Seznam zprávy Stork's Nest Andrej Babiš Jr. Switzerland  Sabina Slonková Jiří Kubík ]

Glossary of difficult words

scoop - an exclusive report or a piece of news published by a newspaper or broadcast by a television or radio station in advance of its rivals;

consent - permission for something to happen or agreement to do something;

on/under false pretenses - by pretending that a certain condition or circumstance is true;

felony - a crime regarded in the U.S. and many other judicial systems as more serious than a misdemeanor;

abhorrent - inspiring disgust and loathing;

repulsive - arousing intense distaste or disgust;

to override - to be more important than.

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