Cabanatuan village watchman arrested for false COVID-19 report about Palayan City

Armand Galang

March 26, 2020 02:44pm

PALAYAN CITY---A village watchman from nearby Cabanatuan City was arrested on Wednesday (March 25) for allegedly peddling fake news about a case of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection in this city.

Vender Cortez, 42, a resident of the village of Cabu, near the border of Palayan City, allegedly made the claim on a 2:30 p.m. Facebook post which triggered "fear and anxiety" among residents of Palayan, according to SSgt. Jay Fidel Libres, investigator. Palayan has no COVID-19 case as of late afternoon on March 26.

Cortez, on his Facebook post, warned his community against mingling with strangers because of the alleged Palayan case, but he later apologized to Palayan residents for the wrong information.

The Palayan police launched a "hot pursuit operation" that led to Cortez' arrest.

He is facing charges for violating Article 154 of the Revised Penal Code in relation to Republic Act No. 10175 also known as the Cybercrime law.

Edited by TSB