Chinese police have uncovered a number of cases involving production and distribution of fake COVID-19 vaccines with doses up to 58,000, the country’s prosecutor general’s office said on Wednesday.
According to a statement from the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, a group of suspects led by a ring leader, identified only by his surname as Kong, was detained by the police last November for producing about 58,000 doses of fake COVID-19 vaccines made of simple saline resolution.
Mr. Kong’s group generated 12 million yuan (about 1.86 million dollars) in profits through the sales of the fake vaccines, the statement said.
In a related case, a number of suspects bought the fake COVID-19 vaccines produced by Kong and tried to smuggle them overseas.
A batch of 600 doses of the fake vaccines was transported to Hong Kong on November 11, 2020 and sent to an unknown destination overseas the next day.
A second batch of 1,200 doses of fake COVID-19 vaccines arrived in Hong Kong on November 12, 2020.
But the group was forced to destroy the unsold fake vaccines two weeks later, after a number of accomplices were detained by Chinese police.
As of Wednesday, about 70 suspects have been arrested in 21 cases related to fake COVID-19 vaccines, the statement said.