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June 28, 2023Grand Island, NE, United StatesCovid-19, Cyber Crimes

Nebraska man sentenced for possession of fraudulent vaccine cards following HSI investigation

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. - Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Kansas City Taekuk Cho and U.S. Attorney Steven Russell announced that Jason C. Olderbak, 35, of Grand Island, was sentenced June 21 for unlawful possession of official U.S. insignia following an HSI investigation.

Senior U.S. District Judge John M. Gerrard sentenced Olderbak to two years of probation, a $3,000 fine and 50 hours of community service. There is no parole in the federal system.

On or about July 30, 2021, Olderbak purchased approximately 21 fraudulent COVID-19 vaccination cards online. On Aug. 3, 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection received the package as it entered the United States from overseas. Recognizing it as similar to many fraudulent packages, officials opened it and discovered the fraudulent vaccine cards.

A search warrant was received to perform a controlled delivery for the package. Officials executed the warrant on Aug.18, 2021, and seized Olderbak’s cellphone and other electronic devices during the investigation. Later examination revealed a web history consistent with the purchase of fraudulent vaccination cards.

Legitimate COVID-19 vaccination cards are produced in the United States and are shipped directly to medical professionals with the COVID-19 vaccine. Each true COVID-19 vaccination card bears the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s seal. The cards Olderbak ordered and received were nearly identical to legitimate COVID-19 vaccination cards, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s seal.

HSI Kansas City-Grand Island investigated the case.

HSI is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of more than 8,700 employees consists of more than 6,000 special agents assigned to 237 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

Learn more about HSI’s mission to combat fraud in your community on Twitter @HSIKansasCity.