2 Michigan men charged in separate vaccination card schemes

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Both defendants allegedly offered the fakes by way of social media.

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Federal investigators introduced on Wednesday that they’d charged two Michigan men in a pair of unrelated schemes the place every allegedly offered phony COVID-19 vaccination playing cards.

The defendants, considered one of whom is a registered nurse, allegedly offered the fraudulent playing cards online by way of social media accounts and messenger companies, prosecutors stated.

“Regardless of whether or not a person chooses to get vaccinated, we urge everybody to keep away from turning to schemes like these to evade vaccination necessities. Importing these playing cards is against the law. Selling these playing cards is against the law.” Saima Mohsin, performing U.S. legal professional for the Eastern District of Michigan, stated in a press release.

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Bethann Kierczak, 37, of Southgate, Michigan, was charged with theft of presidency property and theft or embezzlement associated to a well being care profit program, the U.S. Attorney’s Office stated.

Kierczak, a registered nurse, allegedly stole or embezzled genuine COVID-19 vaccination document playing cards from a VA hospital together with vaccine lot numbers essential to make the playing cards seem legit, prosecutors stated. He allegedly offered the playing cards to people in the Detroit group for $150 to $200 every and commenced promoting by way of Facebook Messenger in May.

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“Since the matter of public well being is so necessary the VA Office of Inspector General will proceed to dedicate assets to those circumstances at any time when and wherever they come up,” Special Agent in Charge Gregg Hirstein of the VA Office of Inspector General stated in a press release.

Rapheal Jarrell Smiley, 32, of Detroit, was charged Wednesday with fraud involving division or company seals, id doc fraud and trafficking in counterfeit items, federal prosecutors stated.

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Smiley allegedly ordered fraudulent COVID-19 vaccination playing cards from two distributors in China which were accused of supplying the phony paperwork, based on the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Smiley allegedly marketed the playing cards on the market via his Facebook and Instagram accounts.

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