Bill combatting COVID-19-related scams moving through state legislature

A proposed bill is going through the state legislature right now that would criminalize COVID-19 related scams and it's gaining support from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.

Lawmakers tell WPBF 25 News that House Bill 9 and its counterpart in the State Senate SB 1608, could make it to the governor's desk in the coming weeks.

This bill would make it a third-degree felony for someone who scams someone in anything related to the COVID-19 vaccine or personal protective equipment. The attorney general would also be able to seek civil penalties for anyone found guilty of this.

While there are already statutes containing penalties for fraud in Florida, this new bill would give law enforcement more power to prosecute anyone perpetrating a COVID-19-related scam.

"Before we pass this bill, it would be unclear if it would be criminalized so I think this will also bring an awareness to senior citizens not to provide personal information or money in exchange for vaccinations,” said Democratic State Representative for Florida's 91st district, Emily Slosberg. "There are always new types of scams that are coming up and it’s important the legislature addresses it as such."

Continue reading at ABC News 25.


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