Three people have been fined €800 each after they were caught presenting false COVID-19 test certificates at Malta International Airport.
A Russian couple claimed that by the time they were made aware of the need to produce a negative test before boarding, it was too late, and thus produced a false certificate instead.
They pleaded guilty to forging a declaration to authorities and using a false document and fined €800 each.
A French national told a similar story of not being able to produce a negative test result in time for his flight. He pleaded guilty and was also fined €800.
Moreover, a Brazilian footballer has been handed a suspended sentence for a similar offence.
Carlos Vilmar Da Silva Rodrigues, aged 33, had come to Malta to sign a deal with a local football team. However, the deal allegedly ended up falling through with the club, which he named as Senglea FC in court, after he found out they would be unable to pay him for his talents.
The footballer underwent a COVID-19 test three days prior to his flight but didn’t receive his result prior to boarding.
He was arrested and charged in court last Saturday, where he admitted to the crime of knowingly making a false declaration to airport authorities and using a fake document.
He was given a one year jail term suspended for four years by magistrate Gabriella Vella due to his cooperation with the police.
Senglea FC has since denied any communication with Carlos Vilmar Da Silva Rodrigues, stating that he never trained nor discussed remuneration with the club.
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