An information technology (IT) officer claimed trial over a charge of spreading fake news regarding vaccination via TikTok, a video sharing social media platform.
The accused, D. Inderpal Singh, 44, pleaded not guilty in front of Judge Norashima Khalid at the Ipoh Sessions/Magistrate Court today (July 12).
He was charged with purportedly using TikTok under the account name “Blackfitt” with the intention of causing worry amongst members of the public through the spread of fake news, which was:
“Those with appointments, they are not allowed to go in or difficult to go in for the second dose of vaccination. Apparently today, about 800 people from Tabung Haji have been given a vaccination without appointments.”
He allegedly committed the offence at around 2.53pm on May 21 earlier this year.
Thus, the accused was charged under Section 4(1) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) (No. 2) Ordinance 2021, with punishment entailing a fine of up to RM100,000, imprisonment of up to three years, or both, if convicted.
The punishment also holds the accused liable to a fine of up to RM1,000 per each day a similar offence is committed after conviction.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Fazrul Shihar Abu Samah requested for a RM10,000 bail, in which the accused’s lawyer Arvind Andrew negotiated for a reduction to RM5,000.
The court ordered a RM9,000 bail with one surety. The case was fixed for re-mention on August 27 this year.