London police in the hunt for man who injected woman with fake COVID-19 vaccine

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Police are on the hunt for a fraudster claiming to work for the NHS who they say injected a 92-year-old woman with a fake Covid-19 vaccine. 

The City of London police said the victim, a resident of Surbiton, south-west London, had allowed the man into her home on 30 December after he knocked on the door claiming to be an NHS worker distributing the Covid-19 vaccine. 

The 92-year-old said she was jabbed in the arm with a “dart-like implement” and made to pay £160, which the man said would be refunded by the NHS.

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Police said it is not clear if any substance was administered. The woman did not appear to suffer any effects, but was given a check-up at hospital. 

The man was alleged to have appeared at her home a second time on 4 January, when he demanded another £100 from the woman.

Police are asking for anyone with information on what was branded a “disgusting” incident to come forward.

“This is a disgusting and totally unacceptable assault on a member of the public which won’t be tolerated,” Det Insp Kevin said in a statement.

“We are appealing to anyone who may have information that could assist us in identifying this man to get in touch,” he said.

“It is crucial we catch him as soon as possible as not only is he defrauding individuals of money, he may endanger people’s lives.”

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On Friday, police released CCTV footage of a man dressed in a navy blue tracksuit with white stripes on the side who they said they want to speak with in connection with the incident.

The man is described as white, in his early 30s, with a medium build and standing at about 5ft 9 inches. His hair is light brown and combed back and he has a London accent, police said.

Anyone with information is asked to call 101, quoting reference 3042 and the date 07 Jan 2021. You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously through their website or by calling 0800 555 111, quoting the same reference.

News of the incident comes as Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cyber reporting centre, has warned that it has received dozens of reports of Covid-19 vaccination scams. 

On Thursday, Action Fraud said it had received a total of 57 reports relating to such scams. 

The reporting centre sought to remind UK residents that the vaccine is only available formally through the NHS and is free of charge. 

Source: The independent