Video of man reporting Covid-19 crimes to police is full of misinformation

7 July 2021
What was claimed

1,295 people died as a result of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Our verdict

That’s how many people reportedly died shortly after vaccination up to 2 June, not necessarily because of the vaccine. Because so many people are being vaccinated, we would expect some of them to die afterwards, by chance.

What was claimed

There were 922,000 adverse reactions as a result of the Covid-19 vaccines and it’s now closer to a million.

Our verdict

These are reported reactions as of 2 June. We don’t know that they happened because of the vaccine, just that they happened shortly afterwards.

What was claimed

PCR tests are contaminated with a dangerous gas called ethylene oxide.

Our verdict

Swabs are sterilised with ethylene oxide, which can be unsafe in large quantities, but not in the amounts used in this way.

What was claimed

The spike protein in some Covid-19 vaccines is toxic to humans.

Our verdict

There’s some evidence that the spike protein generated by vaccines may travel from the injection site, but we don’t have evidence that it’s harmful.

What was claimed

Some reports suggest Covid-19 vaccines have caused a 2,000% increase in miscarriages.

Our verdict

There’s no evidence miscarriages are being caused by the vaccine. You would expect the number of miscarriages following vaccination to increase as more younger people of childbearing age, a proportion of whom may have a miscarriage, become eligible to get vaccinated.

What was claimed

The vaccines contain polysorbate 80 and that is known to cause fertility issues.

Our verdict

The AstraZeneca vaccine does contain small amounts of this additive, which is also used in food. There is no evidence that it causes fertility issues in humans at the levels used in food and vaccines.

Many of our readers have asked us to check claims in a video on Facebook of a man filming himself in a police station making a complaint about Covid-19 vaccines.

The video is over 30 minutes long, but we have looked at the main claims he makes in it here, which are about Covid-19 vaccines and tests, amongst other things.

Over a thousand people haven’t died “as a result” of the Covid-19 vaccines

In the video, the man claims that 1,295 people have died “as a result of the vaccine”.

That is how many people had reportedly died shortly after vaccination, up to 2 June, not necessarily because of the vaccine. The Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) says that “The majority of these reports were in elderly people or people with underlying illness.”

As the latest version of the MHRA document explains: “The nature of Yellow Card reporting means that reported events are not always proven side effects. Some events may have happened anyway, regardless of vaccination.”  

On deaths, it says “Usage of the vaccines has increased rapidly and as such, so has reporting of fatal events with a temporal association with vaccination however, this does not indicate a link between vaccination and the fatalities reported.”

It’s also true, as the man says, that there were just over 922,000 suspected reactions reported up to 2 June. In the same way, these reactions weren’t necessarily caused by the vaccine.

Swabs in tests are not unsafe

The video also claims that PCR tests contain ethylene oxide, a dangerous gas. As we have written before, ethylene oxide exposure can be unsafe, but it is commonly used to sterilise medical equipment, including Covid-19 tests, and doesn’t pose any threat in this way.

The MHRA recently answered a Freedom of Information request on this, explaining that the amount of residual ethylene oxide on swabs means that lateral flow test kits “are safe to use”.

It also said: “In the highly unlikely event that a swab does contain a residual amount above the allowable limit, the risk to the user is still considered to be very low.”

No evidence that vaccine-induced spike proteins are harmful

The man in the video reads out some quotations, which he attributes to the Canadian researcher Dr Byram Bridle, claiming that the Covid vaccines produce a spike protein that is toxic to humans.

This is not true. We have written in detail about this before. So have many other fact checkers

There is a protein on the surface of the virus that causes Covid-19, called a spike protein. The Covid-19 vaccines work by giving the body instructions on how to make that spike protein, so that if the body encounters it later, the immune system can generate a response that attacks the virus faster and more effectively.

There is some evidence that the spike proteins generated by the Moderna vaccine can leave the site of the injection. And the spike proteins on the actual virus itself have been found in the brains of people who died of Covid-19. But this doesn’t mean that the spike proteins generated by the body from the vaccine are harmful.

There’s no evidence the vaccine has increased miscarriages

Quoting another doctor talking about the Covid vaccines, the man in the video says: “There are some reports to suggest there is a 2,000% increase in miscarriages.”

This claim is misleading, and we’ve checked a similar one before

Miscarriages have been reported following Covid-19 vaccinations but there’s no evidence to show that vaccines were the cause. The number reported doesn’t appear to exceed the level you would ordinarily expect.

As we’ve said, the MHRA Yellow Card scheme collects reports of adverse events following vaccination, but does not prove that vaccination was the cause of any of them. It isn’t necessarily surprising that the number of miscarriages reported after vaccination has increased alongside the number of women of childbearing age being vaccinated. Just by increasing that pool of people, you would expect to see a larger number of pregnancies in that group, and therefore a proportion of miscarriages.

No evidence that polysorbate 80 causes infertility

Appearing to quote the same doctor, the man also says: “It is also documented that polysorbate 80 is contained within the vaccines and this is known to cause issues in relation to fertility.”

The AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines do contain small amounts of polysorbate 80, which is also in certain flu jabs and is used as a food additive in things like ice cream. Some people may be allergic to it.

But it’s a persistent myth that polysorbate 80 is linked to fertility issues. A study linking the chemical to reduced fertility in rats is sometimes cited as evidence, but the relative dose given to rats in the trial was significantly larger than humans would ever get in a vaccine.

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as false because many of the claims he makes about vaccines are wrong.

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