A healthcare worker administers a COVID-19 test at United Memorial Medical Center testing site in Houston, Texas, June 25, 2020.
  • As the coronavirus pandemic drags on, people around the world are turning to the black market for negative COVID-19 tests that enable them to travel.
  • Incidents in South America, Europe, and Africa highlight the emerging global black market for negative COVID-19 results.
  • In one case, police in France arrested a ring of sellers operating out of the Charles de Gaulle Airport who were reportedly charging $180 (R2,800) to $360 (R5,600) for false negative results, according to the AP.
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As the coronavirus pandemic continues around the world, some people are turning to an emerging black market for fake negative test results.

In France, at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport in September, a group of seven people were arrested for selling falsified digital certificates intended to prove negative coronavirus results, the AP reported last week. The group was discovered following an investigation sparked by a traveler leaving France for Ethiopia. The traveler reportedly had a fake digital certificate that claimed they tested negative for the virus.

The group in Paris was reportedly selling the fake test results for $180 (R2,800) to $360 (R5,600) apiece.

In another case, in late October, a group of travelers in Brazil was found with falsified negative test results in an attempt to enter the Fernando de Noronha island group, the AP reported.

Rather than buying fake test results, the group is accused of altering their own results. 

In yet another case, in the UK, several gentleman told The Lancashire Telegraph that they had doctored the results of friends' tests in order to travel. "You can simply get their negative test and change the name and birth date to your own. You also put a test date on which is within the time limit required," the unnamed man said. "You download the email, change it and then print it."

Coronavirus diagnoses and deaths continue to climb around the world, and the pandemic has seen a resurgence in recent months in North America and Europe, according to the World Health Organisation. As of November 12, the virus has killed more than 1.2 million people and infected over 51 million people around the globe.

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