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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke October 27, 2022

Photo of protester mischaracterized as showing man who tortured daughter’s rapist

If Your Time is short

  • This photo shows a man arrested in connection with protests in South Africa in 2014. 

A man is being applauded on Instagram for supposedly taking matters into his own hands after learning his 3-year-old daughter had been raped.

"Man tracks down his 3-year-old daughter’s rapist," reads what looks like a headline over an image of a man walking between authorities with his arms raised. It goes on to say the father dismembered the rapist and then cooked and forced the offender to eat his own body part. 

"A hero," reads one comment. "He did what had to be done," reads another.

But the Oct. 27 post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)

A reverse image search quickly proves this claim wrong. 

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Using TinEye, we found a 2017 Daily Mail story about conflict in South Africa between Black residents and immigrants. 

The caption of the photo, attributed to the European Pressphoto Agency, says: "A South African resident is arrested by police after allegedly looting and clashing with foreign residents during a xenophobic march by the Mamelodi Concerned Residents through the streets of Pretoria." 

We couldn’t find any news reports detailing what’s claimed in the Instagram post. A 2014 Independent headline came close: "Father ‘cooked dinner for his daughter’s rapist before torturing and killing him.’" The story says the father of a 14-year-old daughter reportedly burned her "alleged attacker’s genitals with hot tongs before he died."

But this claim is False.


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Photo of protester mischaracterized as showing man who tortured daughter’s rapist

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