The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Woman in Rorschach convicted of forging Covid certificates

A 26-year-old woman was sentenced to a conditional prison sentence of two years by the Rorschach District Court on Tuesday. She worked in a test center during the Covid pandemic and made her access to the federal certificate platform available to counterfeiters.

According to the indictment from the public prosecutor's office in St. Gallen, the woman collaborated with men who planned to make money with fake Covid certificates in November 2021. At seven meetings in the woman's apartment in Rorschach, the acquaintances issued almost 2,500 vaccination certificates for unvaccinated people.

By handing over her access data for the certificate platform, the woman is said to have earned 24,000 francs, the indictment further stated. She also forged a medical certificate so that she could travel by train without a protective mask.

Forgery of documents and identity cards

On Tuesday, the Rorschach District Court sentenced the woman in summary proceedings to a conditional prison sentence of 24 months for multiple counts of forgery of documents and forgery of identity cards. She was also fined 20 daily rates of CHF 30 each.

The woman was remanded in custody for 36 days after her arrest. The verdict is not yet final.

Justice investigated after tip-off

The guilty verdict against the woman is the conclusion of one of several criminal proceedings initiated by the St. Gallen justice system. The starting point was a tip-off about illegally issued vaccination certificates that was received by the Department of Health at the beginning of December 2021. At that time, several people were arrested and house searches were carried out, as the St. Gallen public prosecutor's office announced in January 2022.

At the time, Leo-Philippe Menzel, spokesman for the St. Gallen public prosecutor's office, explained to the Keystone-SDA news agency that some of the accused had misused their accounts in private test centers or at home to create Covid certificates.

Between 300 and 800 francs for a forged certificate

According to the announcement at the time, the cantonal prosecution authorities were aware of more than 9000 illegally manufactured certificates. These included around 8000 vaccination certificates, with the remainder being recovery certificates and a few test certificates.

According to the public prosecutor's office, the purchasers paid between 300 and 800 francs. The people who purchased and used the counterfeit certificates were also liable to prosecution. They were threatened with a fine.

©Keystone/SDA

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