VERA FILES FACT CHECK: FB video shows wrong suspect, NOT alleged killer of OFW in Kuwait


Amid news of the brutal killing of overseas Filipino worker (OFW) Jullebee Ranara whose charred remains were left in the middle of a Kuwaiti desert, a video circulated on Facebook (FB) showing her alleged murderer. This is not true. The footage is that of a suspect in a teen murder case in the U.S. in 2019.

On Jan. 27, an FB user published a reel with this incorrect caption: Ito pala yung pumatay sa ofw sa Kuwait (This is the one who killed the OFW in Kuwait)”

The video, split into three parts, is actually unrelated to Ranara’s murder. It shows police escorting a man in an orange prison uniform and a judge speaking in English, already suggesting it was not taken in Kuwait.

Infographic: The person shown in the FB reel is NOT the suspect behind the killing of Jullebee Ranara, an OFW who was killed and abandoned in the middle of a desert in Kuwait.

The footage in the reel was from a July 2019 video published by YouTube channel FOX Carolina News showing a judge denying bond for Stephen Powell, an American accused of killing an 11-year old and two other youths.

The Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) said Kuwaiti authorities have arrested the 17-year-old suspect behind Ranara’s death, a son of her employer, and is now under police custody. The DMW is still awaiting the Kuwaiti authorities’ official report on the incident.

However, an Arab Times article said ongoing investigations revealed that Ranara was allegedly subjected to sexual abuse before she was killed.

The wrong footage of the alleged murder suspect continues to circulate days after President Ferdinand Marcos personally visited Ranara’s wake and offered his condolences, assuring her family of government support.

The FB netizen’s reel, published in three separate parts, has collectively garnered over 74,000 reactions, 15,000 comments, 17,100 shares and 3.6 million views.


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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.)