PNP investigates alleged sale of fake swab test results

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MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar ordered the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and the Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG) on Thursday to investigate the suspected sale of fabricated negative coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) swab test results.

Inatasan natin ang CIDG at ACG na tingnan ang bagay na ito. Hindi talaga nauubusan ng modus ang mga tuso at oportunista para pagkakitaan ang pandemya (We have instructed the CIDG and ACG to look into this matter. Opportunists and cunning people never run out of modus operandi to make money out of the pandemic),” Eleazar said in a statement.

Reports said that the negative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test results are being sold for at least PHP1,000 each, without the person undergoing an actual swab test.

Even if passengers are completely vaccinated, some local government units (LGUs) nonetheless require them to submit negative Covid-19 swab test results.

“We will not allow this. The PNP will track down and arrest the persons behind this kind of scam,” he assured.

Eleazar described the approach as “deplorable” since it jeopardizes public health and the economy.

He has also cautioned police chiefs that they may be held accountable if they fail to monitor and act against illegal actions in their jurisdictions.

Inatasan ko na ang ating unit commanders na palakasin ang kampanya laban sa mga ganitong uri ng kalokohan at pagsamahin ninyo sa kulungan ang mga nagbebenta at bumibili ng pekeng swab test result. Walang gagawa kung walang tumatangkilik kaya sila ay dapat managot dito (I am ordering our unit commanders to strengthen the campaign against this unscrupulous act. They can put together those selling and buying fake swab test results behind bars. Nobody will produce this if there are no patrons so they should be held liable),” he added.

Eleazar advised the people to quickly disclose any information about the criminal conduct to police.

Kung kayo ay nabiktima na ng ganitong modus o may nanghikayat sa inyo na kumuha ng falsified negative RT-PCR result ay ipagbigay alam ninyo agad sa mga otoridad. Huwag ninyong sakyan o patulan ang ganitong mga scam dahil pati kayo ay mahaharap sa asunto (If you have been a victim of this modus operandi or have been persuaded to obtain a falsified negative RT-PCR result, please notify the authorities immediately. Don’t get involved in such scams because you will also face charges),” Eleazar emphasized. 

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