A Budapest GP and his assistant have been arrested on suspicion of issuing false vaccination certificates; police seized some HUF 60 million (EUR 170,000) in corruption money, the Central Investigating Prosecutor’s Office said on Wednesday, according to state news agency MTI.
It is suspected that the Budapest general practitioner, in collaboration with his assistant, issued vaccination certificates to people who did not want to be vaccinated but needed the immunity certificate, for a fee of between 15-30,000 forints (EUR 42-84), without administering the coronavirus vaccine. The suspects divided the money equally between each other.
Two policemen were present at the office to see how the doctor worked. They obtained a vaccination certificate from the assistant for money after the doctor had sucked the vaccine into a syringe and emptied the contents into the sink, saying “let it run out.”
The regional investigating prosecutor’s office ordered the detention of the doctor and the nurse, questioning them as suspects for corruption- committed by the GP as an offender, and the assistant as an accomplice – and then requested their arrest.
The Budapest Regional Investigating Prosecutor’s Office and the Budapest Metropolitan Investigating Prosecutor’s Office conducted a joint investigation at 11 locations with the National Defense Service and the Standby Police in order to obtain further evidence and apprehend the perpetrators. So far, four people have been questioned as suspects in the case, but neither the healthcare workers nor the two police officers have made official statements.
Featured image: illustration via Attila Balázs/MTI