33-year-old national charged for presenting fake Covid-19 test result

G Fletcher, a young woman from St Andrew who presented a fake Covid-19 test result to enter Grenada from New York, was recently charged by police and is presently on EC$10,000 bail. Police in a news conference on Tuesday, 23 March 2021 did not disclose much information about what caused health officials at the airport to identify the result as not credible. It is understood that a doctor who reviews all results presented to health officials upon arrival at the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA) observed some “medical inconsistencies” with the result presented. The matter was investigated, and the findings handed over to the police. The investigation included contacting the lab in New York where the result was “purportedly” done. Her name was not in the system as one of the persons who had a Covid-19 test conducted at the facility. All persons entering Grenada must present a negative Covid-19 PCR test conducted within 72 hours before travel, and a mandatory test must be conducted on the 5th day after arrival. Fletcher, who is an accounts clerk, tested positive and had to continue her quarantine stay until medically clear. After she had a positive result, health officials then contacted the lab where the test was allegedly conducted, and it was through that investigation it was confirmed that Fletcher’s name was never in the system of the New York lab. She was questioned by police and charged immediately after receiving her medical clearance. She is scheduled to make a court appearance in May 2021. Fletcher who had to surrender her passport to the authorities is facing one count of “Deceit of a Public Officer” and “Uttering a Forged Document.” The penalties for these indictable charges are a maximum of 3 years in prison for deceiving the public officer and 2 years for uttering the forged document. She is the first person to face such a charge in Grenada since Grenada enforced mandatory negative Covid-19 results as a requirement to obtain an entry certificate to the island. Recently, Europol issued a statement warning that scammers are producing and selling fake negative coronavirus test certificates at airports. Europol’s global counterpart, Interpol, had previously warned of criminal gangs selling fake coronavirus vaccines and flooding the market with counterfeit face masks, hand sanitisers and other medical products.

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