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VERA FILES FACT CHECK: De Lima NOT dead

WHAT WAS CLAIMED

Leila De Lima was killed

OUR VERDICT

False:

De Lima is very much alive and is keen on helping the International Criminal Court in its investigation into Duterte’s drug war and in pursuing those responsible for her nearly seven years of imprisonment.

Nov 28, 2023

VERA FILES

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2-minute read

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More than a week after former Sen. Leila de Lima was granted bail, a video on YouTube is claiming in its thumbnail that she was killed. This is not true.

On Nov. 22, a YouTube channel published the video with a false thumbnail, bearing the text:

“OMG! TINUMBA NA! NABIGLA LAHAT! DELIMA KUMPERMADO (sic)! (She’s been killed! Everyone was shocked! De Lima confirmed!)”

Aside from the text, a black-and-white photo of De Lima is shown while images of President Ferdinand Marcos, former President Rodrigo Duterte, former Vice President Leni Robredo and former senator Antonio Trillanes IV can be seen in the background wiping tears and seemingly mourning.

This claim is false. De Lima is very much alive and is keen on helping the International Criminal Court in its investigation into Duterte’s drug war and in pursuing those responsible for her nearly seven years of imprisonment. 

Shortly after her release, several media organizations tailed the former justice secretary who traveled to Iriga City, her hometown, to visit her ailing mother.

De Lima also appeared in an exclusive interview with news organization Rappler, talking about the struggles she faced under the Duterte government and her thoughts on the former president.

The video with the incorrect thumbnail emerged two days after former presidential spokesperson Harry Roque alleged that Judge Gener Gito of the Muntinlupa City Regional Trial Court Branch 206, which granted De Lima’s petition for bail, might have been biased in its decision – claiming that Gito was De Lima’s “favorite student” when she was teaching in San Beda College of Law.

YouTube channel BALITANG PINOY TV (created on Dec. 27, 2020) published the video that garnered over 330 interactions and 9,800 views.

Have you seen any dubious claims, photos, memes, or online posts that you want us to verify? Fill out this reader request form or send it to VERA, the truth bot on Viber.

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

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