Buccaneers receiver Antonio Brown, others involved in fake vaccine card scandal can receive federal punishment
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown is one of three players who is facing punishment from the NFL for using a fake vaccine card, which violated the NFL’s pandemic protocols. The NFLPA is hoping to avoid federal punishment for Brown and the other players involved in the scandal.
Now that the league has concluded that three players used fake vaccination cards (i.e., "misrepresented their vaccination status"), the question becomes whether the federal government will investigate and/or prosecute. https://t.co/tw0Sozs3Cd
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) December 4, 2021
Per Pro Football Talk, federal law states that the punishment for using or buying a fake card is imprisonment for up to five years. The article notes that the key to such punishments is whether or not the CDC label appears on the card.
Of more interest is how the NFL is choosing to handle this matter. Likely never expecting this to be a real issue, the NFL Players Association purposely opted to leave out language that Brown and others used fake vaccination cards so as not to create a “paper trail”, which would then allow the federal government to get involved.
As Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk notes, the possession of a fake vaccine card is probably on the low-to-medium spectrum of crimes on the government’s radar.
Still, the fear of the NFLPA and the actions of Brown’s attorney, who stated that the star wideout has accepted his punishment, suggest that there’s a real chance of prosecution. That puts the microscope on Brown, who appeared on Buccaneers teammate Richard Sherman’s podcast and had his teammate basically absolve him of any wrongdoing.
It’s unclear what the federal government will do in regard to Antonio Brown and others involved in the fake vaccine card scandal. But it’s definitely a real enough issue to prompt concern from the union.