Hundreds of text messages thought to be sent from missing students aboard the sunken South Korean ferry are fake, according to South Korean media.
The phony messages — many of which were sent from high school
students to their parents — could not be legitimate because phone
records show none of the students used their phones since well before
the ferry flipped on Wednesday, according to the Yonhap News Agency.
One of the text messages, from a student identified only as Shin, 18,
noted: “Dad, don’t worry. I’ve got a life vest on and we’re huddled
Her dad replied, “I know the rescue is underway but make your way out if you can.”
“Dad, I can’t walk out … The corridor is full of kids, and it’s too tilted,” she responded.
But South Korea’s Cyber Terror Response Center said on Thursday not a
single one of the 271 ferry passengers had sent a text or made a call
after the ferry sank, the newspaper reported.
“We’ve checked over 300 phones, since some people owned more than one phone,” police said, according to the newspaper.
One sham message was sent from a phone owned by a fifth-grader in Gimpo, Gyeonggi Province, the Herald reports.
The hoax hurts the families of those missing, cops said.
It’s unclear who faked the messages but they face criminal charges, police said.