People are getting caught and facing jail time for their actions.
The New York Post reports that a “black market” for negative COVID tests has sprung up as more countries are requiring them from travelers before allowing them entry.
The Post story then says that seven individuals involved in an organized ring were arrested in France for allegedly selling doctored COVID-19 test results. The unidentified suspects were selling doctored tests for $360 at Charles de Gualle International Airport. The ring was busted when a man traveling to Ethiopia was found with a doctored negative COVID test. The ring of scammers could face up to 5 years in prison.
But it’s not just in France.
In Brazil, four tourists were arrested after trying to pass off negative test results to travel to an island chain off the coast and requires a clean COVID test for all travelers.
One man in England who was able to travel to Pakistan with a fake test result explained how it was done:
“You can simply get their negative test and change the name and birthdate to your own. You also put a test date on which is within the time limit required,” the man, who didn’t want to be named, told the Lancashire Telegraph.
“You download the email, change it and then print it,” said.
He added that he went to such lengths because he couldn’t get a test that he needed to travel since he’s not an essential worker.
“People are doing this as you can’t get a COVID test if you have to travel to Pakistan in case of an emergency. It is difficult to get one unless you are a key worker,” he said.
Source: New York Post
This is just utterly fascinating.
It shows just how difficult actually getting a COVID test has been in other countries and that desperate people will do desperate things.
It’s also quite interesting since some activities are still considered “dangerous” and others are suddenly… just fine now.
Last month, a Harvard study said that air travel is a lower risk activity than grocery shopping… if you can believe that.
The risk of COVID-19 transmission onboard a plane is “reduced to very low levels,” Harvard researchers concluded. The onboard ventilation systems coupled with measures such as masks, frequent cabin cleaning, and distancing during boarding and deplaning help keep the virus from spreading.
“This layered approach reduces the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission onboard aircraft below that of other routine activities during the pandemic, such as grocery shopping or eating out,” the report stated.
Source: ABC News
Does this “black market” for negative tests change the dynamic or nah?
I guess we’ll have to wait a few weeks and see…