Coronavirus: Three arrested for mocking Dubai’s disinfection drive

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Dubai Police warns against irresponsible behaviour as name and shame initiative begins

Dubai: Dubai Police has warned residents against posting videos that mock stay-at-home and movement restrictions in the emirate as it could land them in serious trouble.

The warning comes in the wake of several such videos doing the rounds on the social media -from a man who used howling wolves in a voiceover to denote Dubai’s empty roads to another posing as a policeman.

On Wednesday, Dubai Police arrested an Asian man who posted a video on social media mocking a government institute by adding the sound of howling wolves in the background.

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The following day, another Asian man was arrested for posting a video form a car, claiming he was working with the Criminal Investigation Department at Dubai Police.
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Dubai Police posted the pictures of the two men as part of the name and shame campaign against those who mock the stay-at-home initiative on social media platforms. The aim of the campaign is to discourage such behaviour.

Last week, another Asian man was arrested for posting a video about COVID-19 that went viral on Tik-Tok and other platforms. It showed a police car near Naif in Dubai in a manner that could spread fear among the public.

“Some people are irresponsible and don’t follow government orders. These reckless people not only break the law but also set a bad example for others to follow. We decided to publish their photos when we arrest them,” Colonel Saeed al Hajiri, director of Cyber-Crimes Department at Dubai Police, said.

He said in the past, the police didn’t publish pictures but referred the arrested to the concerned authority for legal action. But now, the police are putting out the pictures in full view.

“We decided to take this level of action because publishing pictures can have serious implications in their lives in the future,” he noted.

The police urged the public to comply with safety instructions and stay home during the sterlisation programme.

According to Article 29 of the Cyber-crime Law, punishment for those who publish online news, information or data to deride or damage the reputation or the country or any of its institutions, includes imprisonment and a fine of up to Dh1 million.

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