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Update on June 1, 12pm: This article was updated to include a statement from the National Crime Prevention Council.
The National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC), a non-profit organisation in Singapore, has deleted a Facebook post after receiving some flak.
According to its website, the NCPC is "committed to promoting public awareness of and concern about crime and to propagate the concept of self-help in crime prevention".
Used meme of Amber Heard
A post published to their Facebook page on May 26 attempted to raise awareness about scammers, and urged the public to stay cautious and "protect [their] hard-earned money".
The post also made use of a meme of actress Amber Heard, who is currently embroiled in a defamation suit with her ex-husband, Johnny Depp.
The latter sued Heard after she authored a Washington Post op-ed accusing him of domestic violence.
The meme the NCPC featured is an image taken of Heard during a part of the legal proceedings.
Heard was recounting an incident where Depp had allegedly "forcibly cavity searched" her for drugs.
She then ended the story by saying that their dog had stepped on a bee the next day, and proceeded to make an expression of hurt, as pictured below.
Heard's expression subsequently went viral and became a meme.
Post got some flak
The NCPC's post featured the same meme multiple times, each with a one-liner related to scams, and which rhyme with "bee".
The post garnered around 1,000 shares before it was removed on May 30, reported The Straits Times.
While some commenters appreciated the humour of the post, others found the use of the meme to be in bad taste.
One Twitter user questioned how the meme made it past the organisation's internal checks.
This ad, from Singapore's National Crime Prevention Council uses a pic of Amber Heard in her defamation trial against Johnny Depp to warn against "scammers." The decision to reference an ongoing trial begs many questions - who signed off on this and thought it was a good idea? pic.twitter.com/KJdfqkJWix— Low De Wei (Dexter) (@DextLow) May 29, 2022
He also shared that using a meme of Heard, who claims she was a victim of domestic abuse by Depp, could send the wrong message to domestic abuse victims in Singapore.
Despite some online pushback, there's been no serious scrutiny from local media or explanations from the org. Not to mention the elephant in the room - the message such an establishment voice sends to women here already reluctant to speak up about abuse— Low De Wei (Dexter) (@DextLow) May 29, 2022
The NCPC told Mothership in a statement that they had used the meme as "we thought the expression captured how members of the public might react when they spot the various signs of scams".
"It was not our intention to demean or insult anyone," they said.
NCPC apologised for the post and any offence caused, and shared that they "will do better in our efforts to outreach to Singaporeans about scams".
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Top photo screenshot from National Crime Prevention Council / FB
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