COVID-19 is no laughing matter, and anyone was thinking of joking about it for April Fool’s Day faces jail time, Thai police threatened today.
As health officials reported another 120 cases and two deaths this morning, police authorities were warning that anyone pretending to be infected or making virus-related jokes faces up to a THB100,000 fine or five years in prison.
Col. Siriwat Deepor of Technology Crime Suppression Division said anyone found guilty of spreading fear or “damaging the country’s image” online will be penalized under both the recently enacted Emergency Decree and the Computer Crime Act.
Last month they threatened to prosecute a celeb who took to social media to say he had become infected, most likely at an army-owned boxing stadium. They backed off after confirming he was indeed sick.
Both Thailand and India have threatened to prosecute any pranksters this April Fool’s Day.
Since January, Thailand has announced a total of 1,771 confirmed cases and 12 deaths.