Former model and actress Avigail “Avi” Siwa was arrested by agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Friday for selling coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) test kits without a permit.
Siwa maintained she was not conducting any illegal activity.
“I’m registered in DTI. I can prove myself that I’m not guilty,” Siwa said.
However, the NBI said her violation of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations on COVID-19 test kits was clear.
“Meron advisory ang FDA natin na kung ikaw ay involve sa pagbebenta o pagdi-distribute nitong mga test kits, kailangan meron kang permit or lisensya galing sa kanila,” Ronald Aguto, NBI-IOD chief, said.
Aside from the P70,000 worth of COVID-19 test kits, Siwa also tried to sell personal protective equipment and rice to undercover agents.
Tension rose when she came face to face with a complainant, who claimed that Siwa failed to deliver the sacks of rice she ordered.
Siwa may be charged with estafa, attempted estafa, and violation of regulations of the FDA if she is proven to lack permission or authority to sell the test kits, the NBI said./Stacy Ang