Jab scam 'exposed by silly error'
Workers who allegedly sold Covid vaccination slots at Bang Sue Grand Station slipped up when they registered 2,000 people for inoculation through a gate reserved for a few hundred foreigners.
The information emerged as police began their investigation into 19 computer system operators suspected of selling as many as 6,000 appointment quotas for Covid-19 vaccinations at Bang Sue Grand Station in Bangkok.
Pol Maj Gen Amnat Traipoj, a railway police commander, said 20 people had already been questioned, including health officials and staff from mobile operators.
So far, no charges have been pressed against anyone, he said.
"The registration information was keyed into the booking system after operating hours closed at 6pm. It happened between 8pm and 10pm," he said. "In total there were 5,000-6,000 people who obtained vaccination bookings through fraudulent registration."
"This fraud may have caused damage totalling several million baht," he said, adding each vaccination booking was sold for between 400–1,200 baht.
Investigators found irregularities in the registrations after the authorities allowed a walk-in vaccination service at Bang Sue Grand Station.
Walk-in services were to be provided to 300 people a day, and they had to be registered with the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Volunteers were recruited as system operators for vaccine registration.
However, the number of bookings had increased by 10–20 people a day.
And on Wednesday, a large crowd gathered at the station's Gate 4. Checks found that 2,000 people had been registered for vaccination through that gate, but the official figure was only 384.