A New York police officer has been arrested and accused of possessing fake COVID-19 vaccine passport cards, and now faces up to 7 years in prison for the allegedly cooked documents.
Paul Daley, a 40-year-old police officer arrested in a suburb of Buffalo, New York, was arraigned last Friday on one count of “criminal possession of a forged instrument in the second degree,” local TV station WKBW reports.
Another man, 29-year-old Kurt Surprenant, was arraigned on one count of “criminal possession of forgery devices.”
Apparently the U.S. Department of Homeland Security intercepted a package from China, which they claim was addressed to Surprenant. They ultimately monitored the delivery as it arrived, then issued a search warrant for the home.
In this process, police determined that Surprenant allegedly sought to “obtain a false vaccine card from his friend, Paul Daley.”
A police officer with the West Seneca Police Department, Daley now stands accused of “knowingly providing a false COVID-19 vaccination card” to his friend “with the intent to defraud.” He has since been suspended without pay.
The shipment from China, according to prosecutors, included blank COVID-19 vaccine cards.
In a press release, Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn championed the arrests, and framed the actions as part of a fight for public health.
“I have issued numerous warnings to the public that the use of a fake vaccine card with the intent to defraud another person or entity is a crime in New York State,” Flynn said in the statement. “I am committed to keeping the residents of Erie County safe, which includes upholding laws related to public health.”
“If you are caught making, possessing, selling or using these fake COVID-19 vaccine cards with the intent to defraud, you will be prosecuted.”
The press release notes that, if convicted, both men face a maximum of 7 years in prison, and reveals that New York has now prosecuted three cases using the Democratic stronghold’s “Truth in Vaccination” legislation from last year.
While COVID-19 vaccine passport cards and mandatory requirements generally only remain common in Democratic stronghold states, the CDC recently passed a measure to recommend COVID-19 vaccines be required for all American children who attend public school.
The agency couches their statement as a “recommendation” that must be adopted by individual states, which can then defer responsibility to individual school districts.
Some Republican governors, including Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, have vowed to fight the childhood vaccine push.
This news and commentary by Tom Pappert originally appeared on Valiant news.