Justice Department shuts down website called coronavirusmedicalkit for selling phony ‘vaccines’ they claimed were from the World Health Organization
- On Sunday, the US Department of Justice shut down coronavirusmedicalkit.com
- The website claimed to offer access to World Health Organization vaccine kits for a shipping charge of $4.95
- There are currently no COVID-19 vaccines nor is the WHO distributing any
- It comes as Attorney General Bill Barr urged federal prosecutors to make stopping coronavirus misinformation a priority
- In the US, there are more than 35,000 confirmed cases and at least 471 deaths
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
The US Department of Justice announced on Sunday that it has shut down a website claiming to sell a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.
According to a complaint filed against the site, called coronavirusmedicalkit.com, which claimed to sell vaccines for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.
The website alleged it offered access to World Health Organization (WHO) vaccine kits for a shipping charge of $4.95.
Needless to say, there is no such vaccine and researchers warn that a vaccine will likely not be available for the next 12 to 18 months.
On Sunday, the US Department of Justice shut down coronavirusmedicalkit.com, which was claiming to offer a vaccine for the virus. Pictured: Samples of the virus are tested at the Microbiology Laboratory of the University Hospital in Switzerland, March 23
The website alleged to offer access to World Health Organization vaccine kits for a shipping charge of $4.95. Pictured: Sample reception area for coronavirus tests at the Microbiology Lab of the Hygienic and Epidemiological Center in the Krasnodar Territory,
Officials from the DOJ state that there are currently no COVID-19 vaccines nor is the WHO distributing any vaccines. Pictured: A person is loaded into an ambulance the Life Care Center in Kirkland, Washington, March 12
A Texas federal judge on Saturday ordered the site to shut down, according to the statement. Its homepage, however, was still accessible as of Sunday evening.
‘Due to the recent outbreak for the Coronavirus (COVID-19) the World Health Organization is giving away vaccine kits. Just pay $4.95 for shipping,’ read a statement on the homepage.
‘You just need to add water, and the drugs and vaccines are ready to be administered.’
It was followed by a place to leave bank account information to pay shipping fees.
The website was registered through Namecheap Inc, which registers domain names like GoDaddy does.
Also on the site was a clip from NBC’s Today show as well as fake testimonials about the coronavirus kits being sold.
By Monday morning, the homepage was replace by one that read: This site can’t be reached…coronavirusmedicalkit.com’s server IP address could not be found.’
The Justice Department did not specify how many people fell victim to the scam, but the investigation is ongoing to identify who is behind the fraud and how much money was stolen.
‘In fact, there are currently no legitimate COVID-19 vaccines and the WHO is not distributing any such vaccine,’ the Justice Department said in a statement.
The intervention by the federal judiciary system is part of ongoing efforts by US authorities to combat the spread of misinformation that has blossomed since the start of the pandemic.
Last week, Attorney General Bill Barr urged federal prosecutors to make stopping misinformation a priority and called US civilians to report all such abuses to the National Center for Disaster Fraud.
He also warned citizens against a variety of scams including selling fake treatments online, imitating emails from the WHO or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention intended to collect personal data, and asking for donations for imaginary organizations.
Simultaneously, the US judicial system is on the warpath to combat price gouging of products such as hand sanitizer or hygienic masks.
Worldwide, more than 349,000 people have been infected and more than 15,000 people have died.
In the US, there are more than 35,000 cases across all 50 states, the District of Columbia and several territories. At least 471 Americans have died.