CINCINNATI — In the last month, Customs and Border Protection officers in Cincinnati have seized five shipments from China containing 1,683 counterfeit COVID-19 vaccination cards and 2,034 fake Pfizer inoculation stickers, according to a news release from CBP.
The cards displayed the logo for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but officers noticed several clues that they were fake, including substandard printing and numerous misspellings, CBP officials said.
“Creating or buying a fake COVID-19 vaccination card is illegal, not to mention dangerous,” said Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie. “Purchasing counterfeit cards supports criminals whose only concern is their bank account, not American security or the health of our citizens. Our officers know that counterfeiters will try to replicate anything to benefit themselves, with no thought to the innocent victims that may suffer from their actions. The men and women of CBP are trained and ready to shut down these scammers and protect our country.”
According to the FBI, making or buying a fake vaccination card not only puts you and those around you at risk for contracting COVID-19, but it is also a federal crime, punishable under Title 18 United States Code, Section 1017. That law states that anyone who fraudulently or wrongfully affixes the seal of a U.S. government agency to a document, or uses, buys, procures or sells such a fraudulent document shall be fined, imprisoned for up to five years, or both.
The shipments were being imported from China by non-medical entities in private residences and apartments in Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, New York and Texas, the release states.
CBP has seized thousands more counterfeit vaccination cards in Chicago, Memphis, Anchorage and Pittsburgh, officials stated.
Visit our Vaccinating Ohio page for the latest updates on Ohio's vaccination program, including links to sign up for a vaccine appointment, a map of nearby vaccination sites, a detailed breakdown of the state's current vaccine phase, and continuing local coverage of COVID-19 vaccines in Northeast Ohio.
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