Jakarta police arrest lab employees for forging negative PCR test results

The Jakarta Metro Police arrested seven people for alleged forgery of COVID-19 test results. Photo: Jakarta Metro Police
The Jakarta Metro Police arrested seven people for alleged forgery of COVID-19 test results. Photo: Jakarta Metro Police

The Jakarta Metro Police have arrested seven people in connection to a medical certificate forgery ring, two of whom were said to be employees of labs for PCR testing.

A negative PCR test or rapid antigen test result is required for domestic flight passengers in Indonesia, and yesterday’s batch of arrests represented the third group of alleged medical certificate forgers to be apprehended by police in the capital.

“They are looking for profit but the consequences can be major. There even emerged a new cluster from a flight,” Jakarta Metro Police spokesman Yusri Yunus said during a press conference yesterday.

The police did not specify on which flight said cluster emerged.

According to Yusri, two of the seven latest suspects worked in labs that performed PCR tests and issued medical certificates for travelers.

“They were able to easily [forge the certificate] because they have the PDF template file. They can just fill in the details based on the orders. Just fill in [customers’] personal details, and then they can print out the stamped letter,” Yusri said.

Two other suspects were identified as customers, who never actually underwent the actual swab test but were enticed by the forged certificate’s lower price and guaranteed negative test result. Meanwhile, the remaining three suspects served as intermediaries.

Each suspect may face up to six years in prison for document forgery under Indonesia’s Criminal Code (KUHP). It’s not yet clear if they may face additional charges for violation of the Health Quarantine Law.

The police say they are expanding the case to identify other possible intermediaries and customers.

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