Suspected ‘Mudwata’ among several detained over alleged cyber bullying
The Guyana Police Force has arrested several persons in connection with a cyber bullying allegation made by reporter Leroy Smith.
Smith earlier this week offered a $1 million reward for the identity of a cartoon character popularly known as ‘Mudwata’ who allegedly made sexual remarks about him on the popular social media site “Tik Tok.”
Among those arrested according to Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum is photographer Keron Bruce.
The press release from the police noted that several pieces of electronic equipment were seized from Bruce’s house including some voice messages and when an analysis/comparison was done, there was a match with the “Mutawata commentary (same language).”
When questioned, the Head of the Police Corporate Communications Unit Mark Ramotar refused to say whether the police obtained a court order to seize Bruce’s equipment.
“The Guyana Police Force received several complaints of cyber bullying implicating persons who are making publications on social media under the name ‘Mudwata.
“As a result of this series of complaints, the Guyana Police Force was obliged under the provisions of the Cyber Crime Act 2018 to investigate the allegations.
“In the discharge of this statutory duty, persons were detained to assist the Police with those investigations,” the police release noted.
Upon the conclusion of the investigation, the police said they will seek legal advice.
The police are mandated to follow such complaints under the Cybercrime Act 2018 – a legislation introduced and passed in the National Assembly by the APNU+AFC during its tenure in government in July 2018.
The law, which carries rigid penalties for acts of child pornography, child luring, cyber-bullying and identity theft among other offences committed in cyberspace, was heavily criticised in part by the then Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP).