January 18, 2022: Stay on top of COVID with CDC tips for buying real masks; 4 free home tests

Many people are seeking N95 and KN95 masks for improved protection against COVID-19. Here are some tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about how to find legitimate ones: https://bit.ly/3nrzf94.

In addition, the Biden Administration is distributing four free COVID-19 antigen tests to every residential address in the U.S. Order yours via the U.S. Postal Service.

If—like most of us—you need more than four, consult the FTC's January 4th guidance about avoiding counterfeit tests online.

Watch our video to learn about the scale of the fake COVID test trade and then order four free covid-19 antigen tests for your household here.

In the South

Louisiana’s Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office announced that it had seized a commercial-grade pill press and around $1 million in illicit drugs, including fake oxycodone tablets, in Lake Charles.

Federal authorities charged a naturopathic therapist in the area of El Paso, Texas who allegedly imported banned performance drugs in from Central and South America and distributed them to Olympic athletes who competed in the summer 2021 games.

In the Northeast

A 50-year-old man in Cheltenham, Pennsylvania was charged with drug delivery resulting in death for allegedly supplying a dealer with the pills that killed 27-year-old Nathan Lauch in February 2021.

A Boston, Massachusetts resident who allegedly sold two kilograms of fentanyl and 6,000 fentanyl pills to an undercover officer over two transactions in October and November 2021 has been indicted by a federal grand jury.

In the Pacific West

In California, two dozen people who have lost loved ones to fentanyl and counterfeit pills made with fentanyl held a rally at the Riverside County District Attorney's Office to raise awareness about fentanyl deaths.

Border Patrol agents in the El Centro Sector in California arrested two United States citizens for attempting to smuggle methamphetamine and counterfeit pills made with fentanyl.

International News

Mexico’s Federal Commission for Health Protection reported that fake versions of molnupiravir, a COVID-19 treatment approved in the country in early January, were circulating.

The Philippines Bureau of Customs seized counterfeit versions of cold and flu medicine, supplements and painkillers worth 30,000,000 Philippine pesos (more than $580,000) from two storage units in Paranaque. A 31-year-old Pakistani citizen was charged with trying to sell the drugs.

Saudi Arabia’s Tax and Customs Authority reported the seizure of 190 million counterfeit “captagon” pills in 2021. Authorities around the world have seized more than 250 million of the amphetamine pills, which mimic a medication that was banned in late 1980s. ​​​​

Fake molnupiravir sold over the counter in Mexico in January 2022. (Source: Cronica Regional)