Feds handing out medical supplies seized from hoarders

By WND Staff

(Image courtesy Pixabay)

Federal officials at the Departments of Justice, and Health and Human Services are distributing some of the personal protective equipment that they seized from hoarders who were seeking to profit.

The supplies, which were distributed in New York and New Jersey, included nearly 200,000 N95 respirator masks, the officials said.

The FBI had found the supplies “during an enforcement operation by the Department of Justice’s COVID-19 Hoarding and Price Gouging Task Force on March 30 and alerted HHS which used its authority under Defense Production Act (DPA) to order that the supplies be immediately furnished to the United States.”

Besides the masks, there were 598,000 medical grade gloves and 130,000 surgical masks, procedure masks, N100 masks, surgical gowns, disinfectant towels, particulate filters, bottles of hand sanitizer, and bottles of spray disinfectant, officials said.

“If you are amassing critical medical equipment for the purpose of selling it at exorbitant prices, you can expect a knock at your door,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “The Department of Justice’s COVID-19 Hoarding and Price Gouging Task Force is working tirelessly around the clock with all our law enforcement partners to ensure that bad actors cannot illicitly profit from the COVID-19 pandemic facing our nation.”

The government is paying the owner of the hoarded equipment “fair market value” and the distributions already have begun to the New Jersey Department of Health, the New York State Department of Health and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

“Cracking down on the hoarding of vital supplies allows us to distribute this material to the heroic healthcare workers on the frontlines who are most in need,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “Thanks to the quick work of the White House, the Department of Justice, and HHS, the seized resources were distributed in days to the doctors, nurses and first responders who need them. President Trump’s all-of-America approach to combating the coronavirus involves an aggressive approach to stopping hoarding, and the American public can play a role by being on the lookout for this behavior.”

Peter Navarro, an assistant to the president, said the FBI and other law enforcement agencies are tracking down every tip regarding critical supplies.

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