Couple arrested for allegedly leaking Covid-19 press release
A couple has been arrested for allegedly leaking a draft of a joint media statement announcing the details of school closures before the information was made public.
The 37-year-old woman, and her husband, 38, have been arrested for wrongful communication of information under the Official Secrets Act, the police said yesterday.
The woman, a public servant, was an authorised recipient of the joint media statement by the Ministry of Social and Family Development and the Ministry of Education, which contained details about the implementation of full home-based learning by schools and institutes of higher learning, as well as the closure of pre-schools and student care centres.
Investigations revealed that she had allegedly taken a screenshot of the media statement on her computer screen and shared the image with her husband via WhatsApp on Friday at about 9am.
Her husband, who was not an authorised recipient of the image, then shared it with his friends, and the image was then circulated online before it was officially released at 4.30pm.
A police statement said the Government takes a serious view of any wrongful communication of confidential information, and will deal firmly anyone who does so.
The offence of wrongful communication of information under the Official Secrets Act is punishable by a fine of up to $2,000 and imprisonment for a term of up to two years.
Unauthorised recipients should also not further circulate the confidential information received, as they may be similarly liable.