Persons Can Face 1 Year Imprisonment For Causing Fear And Alarm

Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves is urging Vincentians at home and abroad to err on the side of caution as it pertains to the spreading of false rumours about the Coronavirus and reports of it being in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Dr. Gonsalves said subsection 1 and 2 of section 64 under of Criminal Code Act, persons are liable to one year imprisonment, for deliberately spreading false rumors.

“Subsection (1) says any person who publishes any false statement, rumour or report, which is likely to cause fear or alarm, or to disturb the public peace, is guilty of an offense and liable to imprisonment for one (1) year. Subsection (2).  It shall be a defense to a charge under subsection (1).

If the accused person/s prove that prior to the publication, measures were taken to verify the accuracy of such statement, rumor or report, as to be leading reasonably to believe, that it is true,” said Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves.

“Well if the officials telling you, that this is the story, you’ll have to get your information from some other source, where you know better than the officials,” said Dr. Gonsalves.

The Health Ministry is urging everyone to refrain from spreading rumors which can cause unhealthy panic. Gonsalves was speaking on WEFM on Monday morning.

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