LEVITTOWN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A former drug store clerk on Long Island has been charged with stealing and forging COVID-19 vaccination cards, something health officials say is not only illegal, but dangerous.
CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan saw residents getting their second doses of the vaccine with their legitimate vaccination cards in hand on Thursday.READ MORE: Stony Brook University Hospital Participating In COVID Vaccine Trial For Children Under 12
“There’s a lot of fraud going on in the world today,” said Mary Catoggio of Massapequa.
Forging vaccination cards is a growing scam.
“It doesn’t look too complicated to reproduce or make it look real,” Steven Catoggio said.
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Police say Zachary Honig, a 21-year-old who lives with his family in Levittown, was busted for stealing boxes of blank vaccination cards from his CVS employer. He has since been fired.
“The first eight cards that he had were already pre-filled out with the batch number,” Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said. “As you see, we already took out the lot number and manufacturer name. He also additionally had 54 blank cards with him.”READ MORE: Now That They Can Fully Reopen, What's The New Normal Like At Big Amusement Parks?
Police said Honig told arresting officers, “I sell the cards to kids, so they can go to school.”
Nassau police said they have no evidence he sold, but they are working with their federal partners on the case.
“Here in Nassau we are not wasting any time. I am going to file some legislation,” to crack down on sellers and manufacturers of bogus vaccination cards, Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said.
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There is a lot of debate about vaccine passports, and if there should be a nationwide data base in this largely makeshift verification system.
Airlines, cruise ships, colleges, sports arenas, many businesses, houses of worship, and even the European Union are considering or already requiring proof of vaccination.MORE NEWS: New York Celebrates End Of COVID Restrictions With Fireworks Honoring Essential Workers
The FBI and Centers for Disease Control have issued a warning to social media and online shopping platforms that making or using the fake cards is punishable by up to five years in prison and steep fines.