More than 622,000 counterfeit N-95 masks seized before reaching Metro Detroit hospital system

DETROIT Homeland Security investigators seized 622,000 counterfeit N-95 face masks from a warehouse in western Detroit.

A Michigan hospital system bought the masks on the impression that they were real. This hospital system now costs $ 3.5 million.

“These are all counterfeit masks that have been illegally imported into the United States and are of inferior quality – and of course they can endanger hospital staff patients if accidentally used,” said Vance Callender, special envoy for Homeland Security.

Defense attorneys learned that a company from China was selling the masks across the United States, including New York, Seattle, and Phoenix. The medical facility is working with investigators to provide evidence.

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“We don’t have an extradition agreement with China. We cannot extract, it provides opportunities to potentially arrest people and travel outside of China or to the United States, “Callender said.

Dr. Frank McGeorge from Local 4 shared how dangerous it could be if these masks had been used. Homeland Security investigations revealed that while seizures were made across the country, the more than 600,000 face masks in Detroit were the largest bust they have made.

The affected hospital did not want to be identified, but is cooperating with the investigation.

Read: More coverage of Local 4 Defenders

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