Greek police arrested a 35-year-old man, who had tested positive for coronavirus, for breaking quarantine rules to deal drugs.
Police stopped the man during a routine inspection in Evosmos, Thessaloniki, earlier this week. Officers found 145 grams of processed cannabis, 19 grams of raw cannabis, a precision scale to weigh and measure the drugs, and money that investigators say was related to drug trafficking activities.
Officers later discovered that the week before, the suspect had tested positive for the Wuhan coronavirus and was ordered to quarantine himself, newspaper Proto Thema reports.
As of Friday afternoon, police were holding the man in custody. He is set to be charged with drug offences and has already been handed a fine of €5,000 for violating coronavirus quarantine.
Criminals Selling Fake Coronavirus-Test Negative Results For Border-Crossing Travellers https://t.co/kG9wZsy9vZ
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Drug dealers in other European countries have struggled with lockdown measures over the year. In France, the country’s Anti-Drug Office (OFAST) warned of potential violence due to shortages of drugs after lockdown measures had restricted air travel.
Dealers have, however, attempted to adapt to the lockdowns and the pandemic, with criminals in Alsace reportedly offering free masks and hand sanitiser to those purchasing narcotics and even delivering the drugs to their clients by car.
Criminals have adapted in other areas as well, such as selling fake medical certification in Greece to help individuals cross the border. According to reports, the criminal gangs charged €30 to €40 (£27-£36/$34-$46) for the fake certificates.
Interpol, the international police operation organisation, warned earlier this week that criminals could even attempt to sell fake coronavirus vaccines for profit.
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“As governments are preparing to roll out vaccines, criminal organisations are planning to infiltrate or disrupt supply chains,” the organisation said. Interpol added: “Criminal networks will also be targeting unsuspecting members of the public via fake websites and false cures, which could pose a significant risk to their health, even their lives.”