On April 6, Armdaily.am published an article entitled “The “creator” of Covid-19 for China (video) arrested in the United States.”
Referring to the WCVB channel, the news site wrote that an American scientist from Harvard University sold the virus to China. “The article refers to Dr. Charles Lieber, Head of the Department of Chemistry and Biology at Harvard University. The American scientist had a contract with Wuhan University to study Covid-19” the website wrote, adding that the investigation into the case of the emergence and spread of the new coronavirus has begun.
Attached to the article is a report by the Boston WCVB TV channel, in which a representative of the US Department of Justice allegedly provides details about the Lieber case.
The Fact Investigation Platform revealed that a scientist named Charles Lieber had indeed been arrested, but the motives for initiating the criminal case were different. Moreover, these events took place two months ago, at the end of January.
On January 28, 2020, the US Department of Justice issued a statement entitled “Harvard University lecturer and two Chinese nationals charged with three different offenses related to China”.
According to the report, Lieber is accused of concealing his connections with China from the US Department of Defense and the National Institute of Health. In particular, he collaborated with one of the universities of Wuhan, as he was involved in the “1000 Talents” program, which aimed to concentrate foreigners and Chinese specialists working abroad in China.
Lieber concealed the fact that he had received $ 1.5 million from the Chinese government to set up a laboratory at Wuhan University of Technology.
The problem is that Lieber has no right to hide these ties from the US Department of Defense and the National Institute of Health (since 2008 Lieber has received grants worth $ 15 million), as cooperation with the Chinese side would cause a conflict of interest. In the US Department of Justice Report, there is no mention of coronavirus and secret experiments in China conducted by Lieber.
The American scientist is accused of hiding the funds received from China, and has nothing to do with the creation of the coronavirus.
The title of the original video was changed and spread months later
The video in the Armdaily article deserves special mention. In the video, the representative of the US Department of Justice presents the details of the case against Lieber and the two Chinese nationals.
The report was prepared by Boston-based online WCVB-TV channel owned by ABC. The original article was published on January 29 under the headline “Harvard department chair arrested; charged with concealing China ties”.
Zubby Entertainment YouTube channel shared the same video on April 4, but with a different title: “The United States has found the man who created and sold the coronavirus to China – Dr. Charles Lieber” . The video has more than 434,465 views. It is noteworthy that there is no mention of the coronavirus in the report.
Russian platforms published the distorted report, claiming that the arrested man was the alleged creator of the new coronavirus. It was probably translated from Russian sources by Armdaily, without checking the source and probably not getting acquainted with the content of the report.
There is no solid evidence that the coronavirus is a manmade disease
As for the rumors that the new type of coronavirus has been artificially created, which from time to time appear in the center of attention of news websites, there is no evidence to confirm this information yet. Moreover, in 2015, Nature Medicine scientific journal published an article on the study of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV) among bats living in China. The authors considered it likely that the virus could have been transmitted from bats to humans. In other words, before the epidemic in China in 2019, the virus already existed, and speculations on this topic have no serious scientific basis.
Thus, the article translated by Armdaily.am that the scientist who created the coronavirus was arrested in the United States does not correspond to reality.