Blogger detained for spreading water pollution rumor

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Shanghai Daily, February 14, 2012
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A man was put under administrative detention for five days for spreading online rumors that the lower section of the Yangtze River was polluted again, police in Zhenjiang City, eastern Jiangsu Province said.

The man identified by his web name "zhihan0358" made an online post saying several bottles of phenol, a toxic acidic compound used in plastic, drugs, herbicide and detergents, were salvaged from the Yangtze River last Friday.

The rumor spread on the Internet and caused panic, the Oriental Morning Post reported today.

Police traced the rumor to a man surnamed Sun in downtown Zhenjiang on Saturday and Sun allegedly confessed to his crime. He will be charged with disturbing public order, police said.

Early in February many Zhenjiang residents reported a strong chemical odor in their tap water, which triggered panic buying of bottled water.

Authorities soon found a South Korean cargo ship was responsible for the chemical spill in the river as its crew flushed the tanker and let the polluted water to leak into the river, the paper said.

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