While COVID-19 vaccination record cards are free and available to everyone in the United States, a significant number of people try to avoid getting vaccinated and, instead, purchase and use a fake vaccine card. However, individuals who create or sell fake vaccination cards can face serious federal charges.
Federal Charges for Vaccination-Card-Related Crimes
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), using the seal of any U.S. agency or department—including the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—carries a federal prison sentence of up to five years and fines.
In addition, selling legitimate vaccine cards to unvaccinated people is punishable by a maximum federal prison term of 10 years. Lying to an investigating officer can result in a maximum five-year federal prison sentence.
Lastly, producing a fraudulent COVID-19 vaccination record card carries a federal prison term of up to 15 years.
In early December 2021, a 53-year-old woman in South Carolina named Tammy McDonald was indicted by a federal grand jury in connection with producing fake COVID-19 vaccine cards. She faces as many as 15 years for each count of producing a fraudulent vaccination card and five years' imprisonment for lying to federal authorities.
A Florida couple was arrested in August for using fake vaccine cards to fly from Miami to Hawaii with their children. A New Jersey woman was charged in the same month for selling several hundred fraudulent vaccination cards for $200 each.
Federal agencies have warned Americans against buying or selling fake vaccine cards. Not only is it a serious criminal offense, but it also endangers public safety.
If you have been charged with a federal crime in Massachusetts, call our Boston legal team at Brad Bailey Law at (617) 500-0252 or fill out our online contact form today for a free consultation. Lead Attorney Brad Bailey is a former state and federal prosecutor with more than 50 years of trial-tested experience!