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Dark Web started selling HIV certificates for Russians to avoid war in Ukraine

May 2, 2023
Dark Web started selling HIV certificates for Russians to avoid war in Ukraine

The cost of a fake HIV certificate is about $850.

Advertisements for the sale of HIV and hepatitis certificates for Russian citizens who are eligible for military service and want to get a deferment from the army have started appearing on black market websites. It is stated that the certificates are processed through the clinic and the buyers will be put on the register of HIV-infected people. Such service will cost users 70 thousand rubles (about $850), Lenta website reports.

There are also certificates for hepatitis B and C, the second option is offered more often due to its reliability. The price for such service will be 80 thousand rubles (about $970). To get the service, buyers need to provide the necessary documents and within three days the certificate will be ready.

Pretending to be HIV-positive is a popular way not to go to war in Russia

In 2022, Dark Web and Telegram channels also massively offered to obtain a certificate of HIV infection or COVID-19 in order to get a deferment from partial mobilization, which was held in Russia from September 21 to October 28.

At that time, the cost of a draft deferment from mobilization on black market websites was up to 2 million rubles (about $24,000). This was the price for those who were seeking employment with a certified IT company with an exemption from mobilization. The seller of the service claimed that it was an organization with an office in the Moscow City skyscraper. The buyer was not required to actually attend the job. In 2022, IT specialists in Russia received a deferment from mobilization as valuable civilian specialists.

The activity of sellers of false medical certificates is related to the expected new wave of mobilization in Russia, which may begin due to the expected Ukrainian counteroffensive. When Ukraine conducted successful counteroffensives in the east and south of the country last fall, Russian authorities were forced to mobilize and send 300,000 conscripts to the front to stall the advance of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Many Russians fled the country to evade being sent to the front lines. To avoid repeating this situation, Russian authorities have passed a law that allows electronic mobilization summonses to be sent. Such summonses are considered served regardless of whether the person is even aware of their existence. Moreover, after receiving the summons, it is forbidden to leave the country. Because of this, evasion of military service is now particularly urgent in Russia.

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