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Two arrested for spreading false coronavirus news in Thailand

Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society said on Thursday that two Thai suspects were arrested and charged with spreading false news in regards to the latest novel coronavirus outbreak, reported Xinhua news agency.

“We have been closely monitoring news and rumors regarding the coronavirus outbreak on social and online media via the Anti-Fake News Centre Thailand to ensure that people receive only verified news and not to cause panic among the public,” said Minister Buddhipongse Punnakanta on Thursday.

“We have also found out that there is plenty of false news in regards to the new coronavirus and are working with the Technology Crime Suppression Division (TCSD) to investigate and arrest the offenders,” the minister said.

“As for now, the TCSD has identified 15 sources of false news via social and online media,” said Buddhipongse. “After investigation, we found that six of those sources have violated the section Computer-related Crime Act 2560.”

The Computer-related Crime Act 2560 stipulates uploading falsified information into a computer system which may affect national security, public safety or may cause public panic.

The DES minister added that two of six offenders had been arrested and charged.

“The other four offenders had no intention to cause harm on their parts and were let go with a warning after signing a police report,” Buddhipongse said.

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