INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the seizure of 4,650 unauthorized COVID-19 test kits Friday.
Officials said the two seizures occurred in the last 45 days.
According to CBP, the test kits are not approved for use in the United States and were turned over to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“Protecting the health of the American people is one of the main priorities for CBP,” said James Moore, Port Director, Indianapolis. “This is a big seizure at this time when we are in the midst of a pandemic. This shows our CBP officers’ commitment to keep dangerous goods out of the US and ensure they are not a threat to our citizens.”
Officials said CBP has seen an increase in unapproved or counterfeit COVID-19 tests being shipped through the mail.
CBP officers made two seizures at Indianapolis’s Express Consignment Operations hub. Officers found plastic bags containing 4,650 COVID-19 test kits.
A complete examination of the shipment led to the finding of packages labeled “COVID-19 Rapid Test Device”.
Indianapolis CBP is not the only office to report similar seizures. Indianapolis falls under the Chicago Field Office which also reported seizures in Louisville, Chicago, and Cincinnati.
More from CBP:
Criminals are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic for illegal financial gain. These criminals are smuggling and selling counterfeit safety equipment, unapproved testing kits, medicines, and hygiene products to individuals. To combat this, CBP is targeting imports and exports – mainly in the international mail and express consignment cargo environments – that may contain counterfeit or illicit goods.
Authorized testing for COVID-19 is being conducted by medical professionals in most states and at local public health laboratories across the United States. The public should be aware of bogus home testing kits for sale either online or in informal-direct-to-consumer settings and the dangers that they may pose if not administered by medical professionals.