Former healthcare company employee charged with delaying shipment of PPE to providers

Georgia’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Fraud Task Force said they have brought charges against a Georgia man for illegally accessing records of his former employer, causing the delay of much-needed personal protective equipment during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

Christopher Dobbins, 40, of Duluth, was charged with conducting a computer intrusion of his former employer, STRADIS, deleting thousands of records and altering hundreds of thousands more company records, U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak announced on Thursday. The records were in the shipping system and his actions caused the delays in the delivery of much-needed PPEs to healthcare providers, the federal prosecutor said.

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“This defendant allegedly disrupted the delivery of personal protective equipment in the middle of a global pandemic,” said U.S. Attorney Pak. “Scarce medical supplies should go to the healthcare workers and hospitals that need them during the pandemic. The Department of Justice is dedicated to moving quickly on cases like this to bring criminal opportunists to justice and protect the public during these challenging times.”

Dobbins was let go early in March of this year, Pak said and had his access revoked. The U.S. Attorney said on March 29 Dobbins had used a fake user account he created while at the company to access the system, three days after receiving his final paycheck.

SEE ALSO: Joint state-federal COVID-19 fraud task force makes its first case

Once in the system, Pak said Dobbins created a second fake account which he used to edit about 115,581 records and delete approximately 2,371 records. Prosecutors said he then deleted both accounts and logged out.

“The FBI is making it a priority during the worldwide pandemic to make sure crucial supplies are not being disrupted or diverted from the front lines of medical care,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “We are grateful to the medical packaging company for promptly reporting this disruption to their delivery of important medical supplies, so that we could react quickly.”

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation continues to investigate the case.

Dobbins was charged on Wednesday and will have his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Russell G. Vineyard.

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