PPE Scams From East to West
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) scams are happening all over the United States; from New Jersey to California, vulnerable and at-risk groups, as well as buyers and investors are getting caught up in these fraudulent occurrences. With PPE in high demand due to the outbreak of COVID-19, some people have taken advantage of the situation in order to lure others into their trap.
“A New Jersey man faces federal wire fraud charges for an alleged $45 million scheme to sell personal protective equipment in the darkest days of the pandemic to New York City at a massive markup,” (NBC New York).
A 400 percent markup to be exact!
Not only that, but he was not even authorized to distribute nor did he even physically have the masks. This wasn’t his first rodeo either. He had attempted to sell more to Florida with a 500 percent markup.
According to the news article, “Romano faces more than 30 years in prison on charges of wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and violations of the Defense Production Act.”
Across the United States, a similar case took place in California where two mask “sellers” Donald Allen and Manuel Revolorio attempted to scam an investor out of millions. The two sent the investor pictures of boxes with masks in them, which they said would be shipped once they were wired the $4 million; luckily the investor became suspicious and contacted authorities.
Allen and Revolorio face wire fraud charges and prison time.
“The alleged behavior here is nothing short of a betrayal of fellow citizens — both those serving on the front lines, and the communities who need those essential workers able to safely serve,” said FBI Assistant Director Bill Sweeney,” (ABCNews).
It’s a shame that certain individuals allow their greed to take over during such a difficult time. This should be a time to work together and build each other up–not use it as an opportunity to swindle.
The main lesson here is buyer and scammer beware.
If you are searching to purchase bulk PPE in Los Angeles, reach out to Terratori today.