MOSCOW, April 7. /TASS/. Russia’s Investigative Committee has opened a criminal case into the fake news in social networks that the COVID-19 novel coronavirus was allegedly created in Russia, Investigative Committee Spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said on Tuesday.
"The Main Investigation Department of Russia’s Investigative Committee has launched a criminal case into the spread of false information on counts of crime stipulated in article 207.1 of the Russian Criminal Code (‘Public Dissemination of Deliberately False Information on the Circumstances that Pose a Threat to the Life and Security of Citizens’)," the spokeswoman said.
As the Investigative Committee spokeswoman said, a Twitter user uploaded a video to his micro-blog, claiming that the COVID-19 coronavirus had been created at the Vector State Research Center, after which the virus was allegedly spread intentionally on the territory of Russia and China through an explosion.
Therefore, the social network user spread deliberately false information under the guise of true reports about the circumstances posing a threat to the life and security of citizens, the Investigative Committee stressed.
Pursuant to article 207.1 of Russia’s Criminal Code, the culprit may face a fine of 300,000 rubles ($3,970) to 700,000 rubles ($9,280) or community service for a term of up to 360 hours or correctional work for a term of up to one year or the restriction of liberty for up to three years.
Search measures are underway to identify the person who created the fake news, the Investigative Committee said.