NEW ORLEANS — At a glance, they look like the real thing. Flash one at a hostess in a New Orleans restaurant or a bouncer in a New Orleans bar, and you might get in.
Only if you look closely, could you spot the flaws that mark these Covid vaccination cards as fake.
In just the last week and a half, Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officers have seized three separate shipments of the fake cards in Memphis – 123 cards in all- bound for New Orleans.
Matthew Dyman, CBP Public Affairs Officer in New Orleans, says the shipments came from Shenzhen, China.
They have the CDC logo, and official-looking spaces for the recipient’s name and birthdate, and the date and place where the vaccination was administered. But they’re not flawless.
Dyman says there are “typos, unfinished words, and some of the Spanish verbiage on the back was misspelled.”
“Sometimes the manifests describe the shipments as ‘paper greeting cards,’ ” says Dyman, but the real giveaway for the CBP is the fact that the shipper was a “non-CDC or medical entity.”
Dyman points out that the FBI says anyone buying, selling, or using a counterfeit Covid vaccination card could face a fine– and up to five years in prison.