Netizen nabbed over fake post on ‘van-riding kidnappers’

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CEBU CITY – A male minor who was arrested Tuesday for posting fake stories on abductions allegedly done by men on board a white van is now facing charges for violating the anti-cybercrime law.

Col. Roderick Mariano, chief of the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO), said the false reports posted by the minor who identified himself as Brigs Granada Alvaro on Facebook have caused alarm to the public.

Alvaro was arrested in his home in Looc village, Danao City.

His posts contained alleged reports of abductions of teenagers by still unidentified groups of men on board vans in Cebu. Reports said vital organs of the abducted victims were being harvested for sale.

Danao City police chief, Lt. Col. Maribel Getigan, said Alvaro was brought to the police station for investigation.

“We are preparing a criminal case for violation of the Revised Penal Code, particularly Alarm and Scandal in relation to Section 6, Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012,” Getigan said in a statement sent to the Philippine News Agency.

Alvaro, being a minor, was turned over to the Danao City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) for custody, she said.

“He is up for psychological assessment whether or not he is on his normal state of mind,” Getigan said, adding that “his action of posting malicious message to the social media had caused panic to the public which is tantamount to criminal offense”.

Meanwhile, Staff Sergeant Gilbert Encabo, chief investigator of Barili Police Station, denied that their precinct is the source of the fake news posted on social media.

“Insofar as our area of responsibility is concerned, we have not come across someone who reported a kidnapping here. There is no record in our police blotter about kidnapping of children and young girls,” Encabo said in a radio interview.

Mariano urged netizens to be careful with their social media posts and see to it that it will not cause alarm to the public. -PNA

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