Colorado attorney general urges residents not to fall for COVID-19 vaccine hucksters

Colorado’s attorney general warned residents Wednesday of potential COVID-19 vaccine scams that he said the state will be watching out for and prosecuting those responsible.

Attorney General Phil Weiser said his office is on the lookout for fraudulent or deceptive sales of fake COVID-19 vaccinations and cures, as the first two vaccines approved by the federal government to combat the novel coronavirus are rolled out.

Those two approved vaccines are the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine and a second one from Moderna. The first Coloradan was vaccinated on Dec. 14.

The Colorado Consumer Protection Act safeguards residents from unfair and deceptive trade practices. Selling or advertising to sell a fake COVID-19 vaccination or cure is punishable by a civil penalty of up to $20,000 per violation, or $50,000 per violation against an older person.

Scams can come in the form of phone, text or email solicitations, Weiser’s office said. Recipients of the vaccine do not have to pay for it, the attorney general said, though there may be a small fee for administration of the vaccine.

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