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Port Moresby Police Commander warns city residents against fake news posts on social media

COMMANDER of the National Capital District and Central Province Assistant Commissioner of Police Donald Yamasombi has warned the NCD public against posting fake news in the social media.
Commander Yamasombi said it is a crime and perpetrators will be arrested and charged if they are found to be releasing fake news.
Commander Yamasombi made this comment following a recent post on social media which had hundreds of Port Moresby residents flocking to the Boroko Police Station this morning.
In a post headlined “Breaking News. Alleged kidnappers caught and held…” it reported that two kidnappers were caught yesterday at Vision City and another three this morning…and a blood stained bag dripping with fresh blood was found in their vehicle.
“This is totally false. There was no blood stained bag found. I can confidently state that the alleged kidnap stories are totally false. The body parts for sale racket is also totally false. Fake news is a crime and police will now investigate all such posts in the social media and arrest and charge all persons making such posts,” Commander Yamasombi said, adding that in the recent incident he confirmed that a man and women are being interviewed at the Boroko Police Station.
“The woman was allegedly kidnapped by the man following a night out at a Port Moresby night club. The man maintained the woman agreed to go with him whilst the woman’s husband alleges that she was kidnapped. The husband caught them at the Vision City Shopping Mall, allegedly assaulted them both and took them both to the Police Station.
“We are still trying to establish whether this was a kidnapping case or if she consented to go with the man. I am shocked that people can turn this into such a sinister story which is causing so much fear and anxiety among the NCD public,” Commander Yamasombi said.
He is now calling upon the public to be more responsible and refrain from posting on the alleged NCD kidnap cases. Police are very concerned about this issue because whilst the social media talks about alleged kidnappings and attempted kidnappings not a single complaint was laid at any of the 9 city police stations.
“There are also reports in the social media about 10 or more missing persons over the last two weeks. There may be about two missing persons reports filed at our police stations within the last two weeks. Whilst we are concerned about the allegations we are at the same time equally concerned about scammers and scaremongers who it appears are maliciously and mischievously posting unconfirmed reports on the social media.
“All those posts in the social media will be now be individually investigated and if found to be false then those persons responsible will be prosecuted under PNG’s Cyber Crimes laws. If you have posted anything in the social media then you are obliged to provide a full statement as to how you came across the information.
“I am appealing to all members of the public including alleged victims or eye witnesses to contact the police in the first instance to report any such incident and refrain from posting in the social media. Anyone with information can contact the Boroko Operations Centre on telephone 3244330 at any time to report the matter. Or simply send a message to our Facebook page, Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary.
“Do not post stories you hear from someone who heard it from someone who may have heard it from someone else. Misinformation and such scare tactics do not help anyone at all. Please be more responsible and help us to help you,” Commander Yamasombi concluded.

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