"Hindi kaya taga Ateneo yan (Are they not from Ateneo)?" the veteran news anchor asked, referring to the suspected "Salisi Gang" members who were caught on video robbing a student of De La Salle University of over P40,000 worth of gadgets and other valuables last Wednesday.
De Castro was quick to say he was just kidding after his co-anchor, Ted Failon, told him not to make such joke.
"Joke lang po, joke lang," he said moments before delivering the closing spiels for Friday's episode of ABS-CBN's flagship newscast.
Viewers immediately turned to social media to give their reactions over De Castro's joke. Here are some of the comments on Twitter:
"Hindi kaya taga-Ateneo 'yan?" –Noli de Castro referring to a thief who stole from a DLSU student. Ladies and gents, Philippine News.— Cy Lagamson (@saielvi) May 15, 2015
coming from a former vice president? Mr Noli De Castro, I dont think that's even acceptable— Paul Eustaquio (@pauleustaquio) May 15, 2015
Bakit ang Ungas ni noli de castro? Pati nanakawan na Tga La Salle mgjojoke pa ng Baka Atenista kumuha? Baduy.— Julius Vilvar (@JuliusVilvar) May 15, 2015
Omg, that comment by Noli de Castro tho. *may nanakawan sa La Salle* Noli: Baka taga-Ateneo yan. WHAT. Be professional naman. @ABSCBNNews— Seb (@jabmarohom) May 15, 2015
Seriously having a great TGIF when suddenly Noli de Castro accuses Ateneans as thieves. SMH! @TVPatrol— Ralph Irish ® (@ThatsARalph) May 15, 2015
T'was a Foul Joke Mr. Noli De Castro.😁😁— Dominic Centeno ツ (@dominic_centeno) May 15, 2015
so disappointed wt Noli de Castro ugh sa nat'l tv niya pa talaga sinabi yun. how insensitive! ugh! 😡😡— Carla Mae Tio (@_carluuuhmae) May 15, 2015
This is the second time this year that netizens slammed De Castro for making a side comment.
In early January, the TV Patrol anchor was criticized online for being "rude" to reporter Winnie Cordero.
The former Vice President became a trending topic on Twitter after the broadcast.