Filipino vloggers have been charged for a kidnapping prank that they did for YouTube content.
According to a report by The Philippine STAR, three people behind the Tukomi channel—namely Mark Lester San Rafael, Mark Hiroshi San Rafael, and Eleazar Stephen Fuentes—are now “facing charges of alarm and scandal” at the Las Piñas City prosecutor’s office for their act.
Brig. Gen. Warren de Leon, who serves as the director of the Integrity Monitoring Enforcement Group, revealed that the complaints were filed by an IMEG staff who happens to be a police investigator that has worked for the Philippine National Police for almost three decades.
In the now-viral vlog, the cop can be seen asking the pranksters in black bonnets to immediately stop their kidnapping stunt with a gun. That was when one of the content creators told him that it was just a joke and apologized.
The policeman decided to push through with his complaint against them to teach them and other pranksters a lesson. “Mas maging malawak ang isipan, isipin ng mabuti ang gagawin o ginagawang content,” he said in an interview on UNTV’s Pulis at Ur Serbis program.
The PNP noted that this should be taken as a warning for other vloggers not to carry out pranks about crimes “as they could be held accountable for tumultus and other disturbances of public order, which carries a prison term of six years.”
The STAR reported that Col. Redrico Maranan, PNP’s public information office chief, emphasized that the penalty could even be changed to 12 years “if a video of the prank is uploaded on social media platforms” because it’s against the Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act.