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Busted: Was Sen. Hontiveros’ cousin arrested over online pyramid scam? It’s a hoax!

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Senator Risa Hontiveros has once said that she is a favorite among fake news sites, given how many fictional stories have been written about her. And this time, the most recent hoax about her allegedly involved her cousin, who was arrested for conducting an online pyramid scam.

The said story has been shared by Duterte fan pages on Facebook, even earning almost 2,200 shares when it was posted by “President Duterte Supporters” and over 1,600 shares after it was shared by “Rodrigo Duterte ‘Disisais.’”

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It was also shared by other Duterte fan pages, such as “Duterte Phenomenon” and “Byaheng Duterte.”

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The story actually came from the noted fake news site Okd2.com, although it was picked up by blogs such as pinoythinking.online, pinoyviralnews.com, and duterteworld.com.

Hontiveros cousin arrested

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Hontiveros’ cousin, a certain Dioscoro Hontiveros and his wife, Jasmin Pasco Hontiveros, were nabbed for collecting over 54 million pesos in an online pyramid scam, the story said. The couple was said to have been in NBI’s wanted list for more than six months until their arrest in Santiago City, Isabela. The Hontiveros couple was alleged to have collected P20,000 to P60,000 per victim while promising a 10% return on investment per week. The scam started in September 2016 but they disappeared a month later, which led the victims to go to the Quezon City Police in November 2016. There were 300 victims, who gave the couple P54 million.

Six of their victims positively identified Dioscoro and his wife as the scammers, which is why they are now charged with multiple counts of syndicated estafa.

Okd2.com described Dioscoro as Senator Hontiveros’ first cousin, who used to be employed at the Farmer’s Market in Cubao before he started the scam. He was also said to have been a labor leader and was tagged in robbery cases from 2010 to 2014.

However, Okd2.com has proved once again to be a good fake storyteller.

We could not find any reports about a certain Dioscoro Hontiveros involved in a pyramid scam that victimized 300 people. It was made up by the fake news site!

Unfortunately, the hoax seemed to have worked, based on the angry comments against Hontiveros.

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Okd2.com seemed to have paid special attention to Hontiveros, given how many fake stories it has written about the senator. These include the hoaxes about how Hontiveros sought a salary increase for rallyists, went on a hunger strike to protest Marcos’ hero’s burial, tried to remove Marcos’ name from Philippine history books, and wanted to raise senior citizens’ age qualification to 65 years old.

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Busted

Busted: Richard Gomez shares fake news claiming Queen Elizabeth II called Duterte a brave man

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Actor and now Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez shared a fake story from an altervista blog claiming that British monarch Queen Elizabeth II called Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte a “brave man.”

Bearing the title, “Queen Elizabeth: Who Would Have Thought That One Day Philippines Will Get Such a Brave Man Like Duterte?” the blog noted that it was from the BBC Channel. However, the blog that published it was britana.altervista.org, which has also been suspended.

However, it should be noted that the blog that published the fake story was was britana.altervista.org, which is already suspended.

 

Gomez shared the post on Twitter on February 21 and it has since caught the attention of the netizens who called him out for sharing fake news.

MemeBuster already busted that story in November 2016. The story was then carried by bbc-channel.com, which is now inactive.

Read more about our story debunking the fake news here.

Several Twitter users called out Gomez for spreading fake news.

Someone urged him to be responsible in sharing news.

Others advised him to check the legitimacy of the news source before sharing.

Gomez was also slammed by netizens when he falsely claimed that the Centenarian Law was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte. The said law was actually signed by former President Benigno Aquino III on June 13, 2016, a week before his term ended.

MemeBuster has listed bbc-channel.com as one of the fake news sites that used the trick of mimicking the URL of established media sources.

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Busted

Busted: Netizens hit Marcos fan page for old misleading meme about Trump allowing Filipinos visa-free entry to US

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In February 2017, fan page “Marcos Corner” posted a meme claiming that US President Donald Trump signed an executive order to allow Filipinos to enter America without a visa.

The meme even said, “Good news for Filipinos…! Thank you President Trump!”

At first look, you’d think the meme was a genuine screenshot from a CNN breaking news story announcing “President Trump signs executive order to allow Filipino citizens to enter America without a visa.”

The Marcos Corner’s admin wrote, “Salute US President.”

“If this is true…. Ayan mga kapwa ko Pinoy. Favor na sa inyo iyan…. #ThanksTrump,” the admin added in a Facebook post on February 10, 2017.

While Marcos Corner posted the meme in February last year, we noticed how it was revived just a few days ago. As of writing, the meme has been shared over 32,000 times. While many of the recent shares showed people being curious about whether the meme’s claim is true or not, some of them just shared the meme without saying anything, making more room for confusion.

There were commenters who rejoiced over the said news.

However, there were also many commenters who called out the Facebook page’s admin for spreading fake news and causing more confusion among the netizens.

The commenters above are right, though. This meme on Trump signing documents that were claimed to be an executive order to give Filipinos visa-free entry to the US is fake.

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MemeBuster has debunked that same photo before when it was first shared in February 2017 by various Facebook pages. We found out that the photo of Trump that was used was actually taken as a screenshot of the live coverage by CNN of the time when the American president signed an EO repealing Obamacare.

There has been no EO from Trump giving Filipinos visa-free entry to his country. In fact, it has been reported recently that Trump wanted to revive the campaign to limit immigrants from bringing their family to the US.

When confronted about the fake news the page “Marcos Corner” was spreading about the Trump and visa for Filipinos, the admin of the page defended themselves by pointing out how they included the phrase “if this is true.”

By including that phrase in their Facebook post, it showed that the admins of the Facebook page was not 100 percent sure about the information that they shared in the first place. And they were right to doubt it because Trump’s photo that was simply pushed online in the meme with misleading texts was really a fake.

Moreover, the list of 63 countries that offer visa-free access to Filipinos does not include the US.

The US’ visa waiver program that allows foreigners to travel to their country for business or tourism for as long as 90 days without getting a visa only includes 38 countries. The Philippines was not included in that list.

Sources: ( chicagotribune.comgmanetwork.com , ph.usembassy.gov )

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Busted: Trillanes nagsabing handa siyang mamatay katulad ni Ninoy Aquino para sa bansa? It’s a misleading headline!

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Pro-Duterte supporters mocked Senator Antonio Trillanes IV for allegedly saying that he is ready to die for our freedom.

Trillanes, a staunch critic of President Rodrigo Duterte, has been the subject of harsh online comments by Duterte supporters.

In the link shared and commented by many of these supporters however, one will be directed to a prompt saying that the blog has been suspended for violations of community rules.

Websites could be flagged for a variety of reasons such as spammy contents, violence, pornography, and more commonly, inappropriate contents. Ever since the issue of online trolls and bashers hounded the Philippines, several websites have been flagged for posting contents that are meant only to direct users to a page despite the content being totally unrelated to the title.

The other article shared by topnewsph.info, which shares the same title proves to be nothing but a clickbait because the content talks about the meeting of President Duterte and the parents of slain teenager Kian Delos Santos.

Comments made by Duterte supporters range from mockery to direct threats. Name calling is also very noticeable in the comments. Some of the commenters called Trillanes a traitor. In the same breath, they compared Trillanes with slain former Sen. Aquino, whom they referred to as a traitor as well.


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The story was picked up by blogs with names such as duterte4.altervista.org, newsflow.tk, newsflow2017.blogspot.com, timenewsinformation.blogspot.com, newsprimeph.blogspot.com, politico.altervista.org, and more.

The posts were spread widely by different Facebook pages that support the president, such as “Pres. Duterte Community” and “Duterte for a Change,” and even by the page of the supporters of Special Assistant to the President Bong Go, among others. Facebook page “Time News Information,” bearing President Duterte’s photo, also shared the story.

Some netizens shared the link to the story to Facebook groups such as “Marcos Loyalist” and “President Rody Duterte Facebook Army.”

But just like with the case with topnewsph.info, the content was not relevant to the headline at all.

If one would do a quick search, no reliable source quoted Trillanes for saying that he is prepared to die for the freedom of the country.

The post circulated at the height of the national call for justice for slain teenager Kian Delos Santos who was allegedly killed helplessly and brutally by members of Caloocan Police.

Trillanes visited the wake of Delos Santos and spoke to the parents of the 17-year-old. He condemned the brutal killing of the teen.

“Last year pa natin ipinagsisigawan na mali ito. Kung hindi pa sila nahuli ng CCTV camera at nag-alburuto pa yung mamamayan, tuloy-tuloy na ito at hindi ito hihinto,” he was quoted by ABS-CBN News.

The death of Delos Santos has been a big issue that also caught the interest of international media.

A senate hearing was also held to investigate the death of Delos Santos.

 

Source: ( ABS CBN News )

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