Spanish police have arrested members of an international network to falsify coronavirus vaccination certificates and test results in Madrid and Barcelona, authorities announced on Tuesday.
The group reportedly sold false documents to at least 1,600 people in the Autonomous Province of Madrid alone.
Members of the group were allegedly selling negative PCR tests for €50 and falsified vaccination certificates were provided for between €200 and €1,000, depending on the number of doses confirmed. The counterfeiters requested payment in cryptocurrency to make it harder for authorities to track transactions.
Spanish authorities began an investigation in early January after a number of online advertisements offering false certificates were flagged. Seven people were detained in the operation, all of whom were Spanish nationals except for one Argentinian. They are also investigating customers of the network and have already identified a well-known singer and a notorious drug dealer.
Police say the Spanish branch of the network has been liquidated, but the group is headquartered in France. Subsequently, Spanish police forwarded the results of the investigation to French police.