Four arrested for spreading fake news on coronavirus

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 29 Jan 2020

PETALING JAYA: A tutor, two pharmacy assistants and a university student were arrested for spreading fake news about the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

The four were arrested in separate operations by the police and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission in Melaka, Kedah and Pahang between 11am and 5pm on Wednesday (Jan 29).

In a statement, MCMC said a 49-year-old part-time tutor was arrested around noon after allegedly uploading fake news about the virus on Facebook on Jan 25.

In Melaka, two pharmacy assistants aged 25 and 30 were picked up in Peringgit and Merlimau around 4pm to help with investigations into the spread of fake news about the virus on a Fcaebook page on Jan 26.

A 24-year-old student at a public university in Kuantan was also arrested around 4.15pm for the same offence after allegedly uploading fake news about the virus on Twitter on Jan 27.

Authorities seized four mobile phones, five SIM cards and two memory cards from the suspects.

The case is being investigated under Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998.

If convicted, the four could face a maximum fine of RM50,000 or serve a prison sentence of not more than a year or both.

They could also face an additional RM1,000 fine if they continue to spread fake news after being convicted.

Earlier, Bukit Aman said it was investigating five cases of fake news circulating through social media about the novel coronavirus.

Bukit Aman CID director Comm Datuk Huzir Mohamed said police are investigating a Facebook page believed to belong to one "Kong Tuck Wah" and three other Facebook accounts with usernames "Ibu Yati","Roti Sardeen" and "Gabungan Anak Terengganu".

Police are also investigating the spread of fake news via WhatsApp, which alleged that a prison inmate died suddenly at Sandakan Prison due to the virus.

On Tuesday (Jan 28), a 34-year-old man was detained in Bangi around 4pm for spreading false information on Jan 26 regarding the coronavirus.

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Fake news , MCMC , Arrest , Police , Wuhan , Coronavirus


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