Two detained over spreading Metro attack rumors

Yang Meiping
Police detain women after false claims with one even using AI-empowered video-generating technology to generate a fake video of "attack in Metro" and posting it on social media.
Yang Meiping

Two women have been detained for starting and spreading rumors about attacks on the Metro, Shanghai police said on Thursday, adding that one even used artificial intelligence technology to fabricate a video.

Police said both worked in marketing. One of them, surnamed Tao, 31, saw police catch a burglary suspect when passing by a supermarket near Zhongshan Park in downtown Changning District around 3pm on Wednesday, and cooked up a story saying someone had stabbed at the Zhongshan Park Metro Station to garner attention for the brand she works for, police said.

Another woman, surnamed Gao, 46, was alleged to have used AI-empowered video-generating technology to generate a fake video of "attack in Metro" and posted it on a social media account she operates on Wednesday morning to attract followers and clicks.

The rumors were spread at the same time a knife attack was reported at a Metro station in suburban Minhang District.

A 54-year-old knife-wielding man was apprehended by Shanghai police after he attacked people at the Hechuan Road station on the city's Metro Line 9 on Wednesday morning, leaving three people injured.

The injured were sent to hospital for medical treatment. The station was temporarily closed following the incident.

The case is under police investigation.


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