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Intentional coronavirus spreaders could be prosecuted in US

A US Department for Justice official has said that people who intentionally spread coronavirus could face prosecution under federal anti-terrorism laws.

A memo, obtained by Politico, is reported to outline Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen saying that prosecutors and investigators could come across cases of ‘purposeful exposure and infection of others with COVID-19’. As the virus meets the statutory definition of a ‘biological agent’, the memo, which was sent to top Justice Department leaders, law enforcement agency chiefs and US attorneys across the country, suggests that ‘such acts potentially could implicate the nation’s terrorism-related statutes’.

He wrote: “Threats or attempts to use COVID-19 as a weapon against Americans will not be tolerated.”

It is believed that the warning is precautionary, with no known cases of any such threats or intentional exposures.

It has also been reported that cases of people deliberately contaminating others with the coronavirus, resulting in death, will be classified as terrorism, hooliganism or an act of sabotage in Russia.

The State Duma’s Committee on State Building and Legislation said that: "If the death of one or more persons was caused by deliberate violation of sanitary and epidemiological rules, this act depending on the reason will be classified as terrorism, hooliganism or an act of sabotage (Article 2005, 213, 281 of the Russian Criminal Code).”



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