A Sikh man who was wrongly accused of being responsible for the Paris attacks last year has been targeted for a second time, after a photoshopped image circulated on social media claiming he was behind the attack in Nice.
Last November, people tweeted that Veerender Jubbal was the one of the Paris attackers after a photo of him was photoshopped to make it look like he was wearing a suicide bomb vest.
The image – which was printed in some of the world's biggest newspapers – was quickly debunked by social media users, who noticed the iPad had been photoshopped as a Quran.
A closer look showed the image had been heavily photoshopped.
Jubbal spoke out against the fake image, and said he believed he was targeted by supporters of Gamergate because he was an outspoken critic of the controversial online movement.
In a statement at the time, Jubbal described the experience as "deeply disturbing."
On Friday, for a second time in less than a year, the fake image of Jubbal was being circulated online again.
Several users who tweeted out the fake image – including @OfficialSamHyde shown above – now have their accounts suspended.
Simran Singh, a friend of Jubbal, stressed the circulation of the faked image was not "a joke" and urged people to end the rumors.
Singh, who is a Senior Religion Fellow at the Sikh Coalition, said people who are sharing the photo are "fear-mongering" and "putting the lives of innocent people at risk."
Singh told BuzzFeed News: "Veeren has been an incredible advocate for equal rights across the online community, and unfortunately, people who disagree with his positions have attacked him in repulsive and inhumane ways. Last year, someone photoshopped an image of him and used it to spread rumors that he was involved in the Paris attacks. Now, someone else is circulating his photo and claiming he had something to do with the Nice attacks.
For those who think it's just a meaningless joke, last year when this happened, several news outlets in Europe published his photo and named him as a suspect. These false accusations put my friend's life at risk, and his life has never been the same."
Others noted Jubbal was forced to leave social media after being accused of being a Paris attacker.
Others said his life was "ripped apart" after the false claim last year.
Many are urging people to be extra vigilant in reporting the fake photo.
In an article he wrote for the Guardian earlier this month, Jubbal said he received a death threat because of the fake photo in December, from a Twitter user who listed his home address and number.
Rossalyn Warren is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Rossalyn Warren at email@example.com.
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