A petition in protest of Brexit is under investigation for fake signatures, and investigators so far have removed 77,000 names supporting a call for a second referendum on European Union membership.
The House of Commons Petitions Committee posted about the inquiry on Twitter this past Sunday.
The U.K.'s bombshell vote to leave the European Union shocked the world and led to a resignation announcement by British Prime Minister David Cameron.
A spokesperson for Cameron said a new vote on this issue is "not remotely on the cards," The Independent reported
. Instead, plans are in the works for a special government unit to consider Britain’s options for renegotiation with the EU.
Suspicious signatures were attributed to places outside the U.K., including 39,411 residents of Vatican City, which has a population of 800, The Telegraph reported
. More than 23,000 signatures were attributed to North Korea. Other locations bearing signatories included Aruba, Bermuda, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Venezuela, and several South Pacific islands.
, hosted on a U.K. government website, had more than 3.9 million signatures as of Tuesday.
"People adding fraudulent signatures to this petition should know that they undermine the cause they pretend to support," said Helen Jones, chair of the petitions committee, according to The Guardian
“It is clear that this petition is very important to a substantial number of people. The petitions committee will be considering the petition at its meeting next week, and will decide whether or not to schedule a debate on it.”
The website includes a checkbox to confirm that signatories are either British citizens or residents of the U.K., but proof of ID is not required.
The group Pranksters 4Chan is thought to be responsible for many of the fake signatures, The Mirror reported
One user posting to an online message board wrote, "They'll look at the IPs and wonder how the f*** people from north Korea and the Vatican are voting."
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