South Africa, China seize fake coronavirus vaccines: Interpol.

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International police agency says 400 vials containing fake vaccine found at a warehouse outside Johannesburg in South Africa.

Security officials in China and South Africa have seized thousands of counterfeit doses of the coronavirus vaccine, the global police agency Interpol revealed.
The international police force said in a statement on Wednesday that 400 vials, equivalent to about 2,400 doses, containing the fake vaccine were found at a warehouse in Germiston outside Johannesburg in South Africa, where officers also recovered fake masks and arrested three Chinese citizens and a Zambian national.

Western countries have ‘hoarded’ Covid vaccines. Africa is being left behind as cases surge

“Since COVID-19 reached the shores of South Africa, the government has adopted an integrated multi-disciplinary law enforcement approach,” said Brigadier Vish Naidoo, South African national police spokesperson, according to the Interpol statement.

“This, together with our association with counterparts from all Interpol member countries, is proving to be very effective as we have seen in the arrests for foreign nationals attempting to peddle fake vaccines to unsuspecting people within South Africa.”

In China, police successfully identified a network selling counterfeit COVID-19 vaccines in an investigation supported by Interpol, which has 194 member countries, it said.

Police raided the manufacturing premises resulting in the arrest of some 80 suspects and seized more than 3,000 fake vaccines on the scene, it said.

“The Chinese government attaches great importance to vaccine security. Chinese police are conducting a targeted campaign to prevent and crack down on crimes related to vaccines,” a spokesman for the Chinese ministry of public security said.

Interpol earlier this year issued an “Orange Notice” warning authorities worldwide to prepare for organised crime networks targeting COVID-19 vaccines, both physically and online.

“Whilst we welcome this result, this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to COVID-19 vaccine-related crime,” said Interpol Secretary-General Juergen Stock.

Interpol said it was also receiving additional reports of fake vaccine distribution at nursing homes.
“No approved vaccines are currently available for sale online.

Any vaccine being advertised on websites or the dark web will not be legitimate, will not have been tested, and may be dangerous,” the statement said.

“Anyone who buys these drugs is putting themselves at risk and giving their money to organised criminals.”

Stock had warned in December in an interview with German weekly Wirtschafts Woche of a sharp rise in crime because of vaccine roll-outs, with thefts and warehouse break-ins and attacks on vaccine shipments.

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SOURCEAljazeera
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Citizen Atare is a Ghanaian who hails from the Upper East Region. He is an ICT professional working with CERSGIS, a Remote Sensing & GIS Centre, located at the University of Ghana, Legon. Citizen Atare is an amateur freelance writer and blogger for over 20 years, who likes to research into everyday lifestyle issues and situations, politics, and cultural practices to write about to educate and also entertain his readers. He is a highly creative and motivated, highly inquisitive, open minded and to an extent risk-taking with a high visual acumen. He is a dreamer who isn’t afraid to break creative barriers. He is also a passionate aviation, tech and motoring enthusiast with a lot of knowledge to share. He has no formal education or certificate in journalism, but the hunger to know more and do more, backed by an impressive work portfolio is what drives him to write the things he knows best for his numerous online fans. Citizen Atare is married to Margaret and they both live in Accra with their lovely daughter Zoey. His hobbies include reading, listening to very good music; especially jazz, writing, watching action, sci-fi and adventure movies, travel and site seeing and swiming. He likes eating fufu and palm nut soup, but prefers boiled rice and kontomire stew with agushie more.

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