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Malaysian doctor who allegedly issued fake Covid-19 vaccination certificates rearrested

MARANG, TERENGGANU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A Malaysian doctor, who was previously held by the authorities over allegations of issuing fake Covid-19 vaccination certificates, has been rearrested as a cheating suspect.

Terengganu Commercial Crime Investigation Department chief M. Zambri Mahmud told national news agency Bernama that the doctor, who operated a private clinic in the Marang district, was rearrested after allegedly receiving payments to supply Covid-19 vaccination certificates without administering the injections.

He, however, failed to provide the certificates to his clients.

"Reports were lodged against the doctor by complainants who paid RM450 (S$145) each for his services and were promised that their (contact tracing app) MySejahtera status would list them as vaccine recipients within 14 days. However, their status did not change," said Mr Zambri.

Terengganu magistrate court judge Engku Nurul Ain Engku Muda on Friday (Jan 14) allowed the 51-year-old man to be remanded for the police to investigate the matter.

The doctor, who was not named in media reports, had earlier been arrested by police at the private clinic for allegedly issuing fake Covid-19 vaccination certificates.

The certificates were allegedly sold by him at between RM400 and RM600 each to those who wished to get these passes without being vaccinated, Bernama reported.

A vaccination certificate, whether in digital or printed form, must be produced before a person is allowed into Malaysian malls, cinemas and most shops.

Preliminary investigations by the authorities found that 1,900 people including those living outside Terengganu had dealt with the clinic operated by the doctor for vaccination purposes since September last year.

But it was unclear if all of them had bought the fake certificates.

Bernama also reported that police are investigating five individuals who had come forward to give statements on the purchase of fake Covid-19 vaccination certificates from a private clinic in Terengganu.

Mr Zambri told the Sinar Harian portal that the five were in their 30s and local residents.

"We have taken statements from them to help in the investigation. One of them claims to have been cheated, as he had yet to receive his vaccination certificate despite making payment," he said.

Police said the five individuals agreed to be witnesses in the case.