Nurse arrested for faking COVID-19 vaccine shots to at least 45 people

Nurses prepare and check vaccine syringes at FieraMesse, the Bolzano trade fair center, during the Covid 19 vaccination marathon in South Tyrol, on December 11, 2021 in Bolzano, Italy.
BOLZANO, ITALY - DECEMBER 11: Nurses prepare and check vaccine syringes at FieraMesse, the Bolzano trade fair center, during the Covid 19 vaccination marathon in South Tyrol, on December 11, 2021 in Bolzano, Italy. Italy's German-speaking north has one of the country's lowest vaccination turn-outs and high infection rates, with the onset of ski season and Christmas, efforts are underway to encourage inoculation against Covid-19. Photo credit Francesca Volpi/Getty Images

Police in Italy have arrested a nurse on charges that he faked giving COVID-19 vaccines to at least 45 people so they could get a fake health pass, getting rid of the vaccines in a disposal bin, and even putting bandages on the people to avoid any suspicion of a scam.

Police on the eastern coast of Italy in Ancona also placed four alleged accomplices under house arrest and accused them of finding anti-vaccine supporters that wanted to pay for a health pass instead of getting the shots.

The nurse was caught on film by the police as he was apparently squirting the needle's contents into a medical waste bin before pretending to administer the patient's shot and giving them a bandage.

Police said the fake vaccination scheme wasted a "fundamental public resource."

The suspects are accused of corruption, falsifying information and embezzlement.

Italy requires proof of vaccination or a recent recovery from COVID-19 to enjoy leisure activities and use public transportation.

There were 184,577 new cases reported in Italy on Jan. 14, with a 7-day average 168,597 new cases.

New cases in Italy hit an all-time high on Jan. 11 with a reported 220,519.

Cases have drastically risen in Italy since the early fall, as there were only 3,403 new cases on Oct. 1 with a 7-day average of 3,152 new cases at that time.

As of Jan. 13, 82.6% or 49.2 million people have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine in Italy, and 76% or 45.2 million people are fully vaccinated. Only 42.7% or 25.4 million people have received their booster shot.