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Man penalized for spreading information about COVID-19 patient

(Xinhua)    10:04, December 10, 2020

CHENGDU, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- Police in southwest China's Sichuan Province said Wednesday they had issued an administrative penalty to a man accused of illegally spreading the personal information about a COVID-19 patient online that led to harassment against the latter.

The Chenghua branch of Chengdu's public security bureau said in a statement that the man surnamed Wang posted a picture on social media containing identity information and daily movements of a woman surnamed Zhao, who was confirmed as a COVID-19 patient on Tuesday.

Police said Wang's invasion of others' privacy caused baleful effects in society and that Wang has admitted to his wrongful deeds.

The statement did not mention the exact nature of the administrative penalty, which could range from fines to detention.

The police action followed heated online discussions surrounding Zhao, who reportedly visited several bars in the 14 days before her diagnosis. While some netizens defended her movements as typical in the city known for its vibrant nightlife, others lambasted her for spreading the virus through her party lifestyle.

Zhao, on Wednesday, issued a statement via a media outlet, saying she had been receiving harassing texts and calls. The victim of cyber violence said she worked in the bars and was then unaware of her grandmother's COVID-19 diagnosis, from whom she probably contracted the virus.

According to the Chengdu municipal health commission, Zhao was among the four new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases the city reported on Tuesday. Authorities said 91 close contacts of Zhao had been quarantined and tested as of Tuesday evening.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Wen Ying, Bianji)

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