Prosecutors announced on Thursday that a Texas doctor was accused of stealing nine coveted doses of the COVID-19 vaccine while working at a county-level vaccination site.
Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said in a statement that Dr. Hassan Gokar, who worked with the Harris County Public Health System, was accused of stealing from a vaccination site in Hamborough on December 29 A vial containing a vaccine.
Ogg said that a week later, Gokal exaggerated the theft to a colleague and then complained to his supervisor.
Gokal was later fired.
Ogg said that Gokal stole the doses given to their family and friends, but those who needed the shot most did not.
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Attorney Paul Doyle defended the client, saying the vaccine would expire anyway.
“Dr. Gokal is a dedicated civil servant who ensures that the COVID-19 vaccine dose that could have expired is injected into the arms of people who meet the acceptance criteria,” Doyle said in a statement to KHOU11.
“Harris County had hoped that Dr. Gokal would scrap these vaccines, and in the process of supporting this policy, tried to destroy this person’s reputation. We look forward to correcting this error in court.” The lawyer continued.
Gokal will face up to one year in prison and a fine of $4,000.