A conspiracy theory surrounding a Harvard professor has gone viral on the social media platform.
People have been sharing a message with a video clip claiming that US authorities have arrested Dr Charles Lieber, for creating coronavirus and selling it to China, reported India Today.
The video has been circulating on Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp creating a frenzy.
However, India Today Anti Fake News War Room (AFWA) has found the claim to be misleading as his arrest had no connection to coronavirus.
Dr Charles Lieber was arrested in January 2020 for lying and making fraudulent statements to US federal authorities about funds he had allegedly received from the Chinese government.
Facebook users such as "Alex Alvarez" and "Meera Singh" have posted the video - a clipping of US news channel "WCVB" - with the caption, "USA just discovered the man who manufactured and sold the #coronavirus to #China. Dr #CharlesLieber, head of the chemistry and biology department at #HarvardUniversity, USA. He was just arrested today according to American department sources."
Why was Dr Lieber arrested?
Dr Charles Lieber is a nanoscientist and has no connection to coronavirus. News of his arrest was reported widely by the mainstream US media.
According to "The New York Times", the Harvard professor was accused of concealing Chinese funding. He was not arrested for spying or accused of sending any sensitive information to China.
Dr Lieber was arrested in January 2020 by US federal authorities for "making a materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statement" on funds he received from China.
According to the US Department of Justice statement, on January 28, 2020, Dr Lieber, who has served as principal investigator of Lieber Research Group at Harvard University, which specialises in nanoscience, got more than $15 million in grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Department of Defense (DOD).
These grants require the disclosure of significant foreign financial conflicts of interest, including financial support from foreign governments or foreign entities.
But Dr Lieber was also a "strategic scientist" at Wuhan University of Technology (WUT) in China and a contractual participant in China's "Thousand Talents Plan" and received a huge amount of money from the Chinese government.
It is alleged he kept this information as secret and did not inform either Harvard University or US authorities.
The "Thousand Talents Plan" is one of China's most prominent programmes designed to attract and recruit overseas talents and foreign experts to contribute to its scientific development.
It is true that Dr Charles Lieber, a Harvard professor, was arrested by US federal authorities for concealing the fact that he received huge money from the Chinese government and worked as a "strategic scientist" at China's Wuhan University of Technology.
However, US authorities have not found any connection of Dr Lieber with coronavirus.