VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Bogus ‘CNN Philippines’ site posts FAKE story on joint disease cure


A website imitating CNN Philippines posted an article on a product for joint diseases supposedly formulated by former National Task Force against COVID-19 special adviser Tony Leachon. This story is fabricated.

Circulating on Facebook (FB) as early as April, the site featured an interview of internist and cardiologist Leachon with CNN Philippines anchor Pinky Webb. He supposedly narrated how he formulated the product that allegedly treats joint diseases such as arthritis, osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis. 

It further claimed that the product called Jointlab “completely restores and strengthens joints, relieves pain and restores circulation.” Allegedly, it helps affected joints “at almost any stage of the disease” to attain “complete recovery” in just two to three weeks of treatment. 

This is fake. Leachon clarified in a June 6 statement that he is not affiliated with the website and the circulating story is just “another fake news.” Updates from Leachon are posted on his official social media pages.

In a June 23 email to VERA Files, CNN Philippines Multiplatform Executive Producer Lara Tan also disowned the circulating website.

“We have looked into this and we are in no way connected to them…The CNN Philippines brand equates to accurate, fair and balanced reporting. We vigorously pursue these journalistic traits in our content. Again, we are not connected in any way to Neocardia and Jointlab,” Tan said.

Jointlab is not a drug or dietary supplement registered with the Food and Drug Administration. 

The site imitates CNN Philippines official webpage’s layout. 

Screenshots from Leachon’s 2019 CNN Philippines interview on a different topic were also used. To further deceive netizens, the story was attributed to the names of actual CNN journalists.

Netizens were promised discounts and asked to provide personal information to buy Jointlab. 

The discounted product is supposedly financed by the “Philippines without arthritis” campaign of a non-existent “Ministry of Health.” The Department of Health has not posted anything on such a project. 

The site with the domain name posted the fabricated story. VERA Files Fact Check previously debunked a similar scam spread by this site that impersonates media organizations to promote unregistered cures. (Read Another ‘ANC’ impostor site peddles cure for hypertension, clogged blood vessels)

VERA Files Fact Check also debunked other fake advertisements using Leachon’s identity. 

(Read ABS-CBN’ impostor sites post FAKE story on ‘diabetes cure’)


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(Editor’s Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)