CUTLER BAY, Fla. – The same type of Chinese-made medical ventilator that was recently treated as waste in Florida was associated with alleged wasteful spending in a public corruption case in southeastern Europe.
Local 10 News′ reporting about the brand new Chinese-made medical ventilators trashed at a Miami-Dade County landfill made headlines in Bosnia, where a scandal involving government officials accused of money laundering and bribery involves the same make and model.
A licensed U.S. Customs broker based in Miami-Dade’s city of Doral recently dumped millions of dollars worth of ACM812A ventilators by the Beijing Aerospace ChangFeng at the South Dade Landfill.
Bosnian journalists reached out to Local 10 News after seeing the reporting last month on social media. In an interview via Skype over the weekend, they asked Local 10 News’ Glenna Milberg about the details of the story, and learned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had not included the ACM812A ventilators manufactured by the Beijing Aerospace ChangFeng on its list of ventilators approved for emergency use during the coronavirus pandemic.
That’s likely the reason a U.S. Customs broker in Doral dumped millions of dollars worth of the new, unused ventilators, on behalf of an unnamed client
In Bosnia, prosecutors allege that the prime minister of Bosnia’s Muslim-Croat federation, a top state civil protection official, and the owner of a company that received about $5.5 million from the government are all involved in a scheme to import about 100 ACM812A ventilators at grossly inflated prices.
The Bosnian television producer explained that once in use, hospitals discovered that the ventilator model was built for temporary use in transports, and not for use in intensive care units during the coronavirus pandemic.
The public corruption case in Bosnia is ongoing, and the defendants have denied any wrongdoing.
Related story: Bosnia: Officials, firm owner arrested over ventilator deal
Related link: Journalist in Bosnia interviews Local 10 News’ Glenna Milberg (Bosnian language)