A Govt Clerk And A Woman Are Behind Bars For Making Up A Crime That Didn't Happen
Around noon yesterday, police arrested a 45-year-old government clerk and his 20-year-old sister-in-law in Sibu for making up a crime and spreading false news about it using WeChat and Facebook
According to a BorneoPost Online report, police were informed about two Facebook posts, containing several photos, made by the 20-year-old woman under the name Bini Wat Gandai on the night of 23 February and again on the morning of 24 February.
In the posts, she alleged that a group of student thugs from SMK Sibujaya had assembled illegally at Town Villa, Sibujaya to fight and commit violence.
In one of the posts, the woman alleged that the situation was creating a public nuisance to the residents in that area and urged police to take immediate action.
After being informed about the posts, a team from CID Sibu was sent to the school to investigate. However, they found that no such thing happened and the posts were spreading false information.
According to the police, the photos were taken during the normal peak hours where parents were sending their children to school
Their investigation revealed that no such incident occurred the previous day or any other day as alleged by Bini Wat Gandai in her Facebook posts.
However, after the police were done with their investigation, the woman, who is unemployed, posted another set of photos on her Facebook account.
In the post, she thanked the police for "resolving the matter", a matter that never actually occurred in the first place.
Following which, a police report was lodged against the woman and her brother-in-law, the government clerk who originally took the photos and posted on his WeChat. Police first called them to the station for questioning and later arrested them from their homes.
According to the police, the woman claimed that she saw the posting in her brother-in-law’s WeChat and copied them to her Facebook account without verifying.
The brother-in-law gave the excuse that he saw a group of students in front of the school and assumed they were going to fight. He took several photos and posted them in his WeChat, creating fear among folks in SibuJaya.
The case is being investigated under Section 500 of the Penal Code and 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998.
Speaking about the case, Sarawak CID Chief Datuk Dev Kumar said that although there have been wide media coverage of social media users being arrested for spreading false crime news, some people seemed completely oblivious to the hardline approach by the police
He, however, added that the Sarawak police will "continue to take an uncompromising approach towards fake news and misinformation in the social media that can create unnecessary concern and fear among the community".