BALTIMORE — A Frederick man has been charged for allegedly using Ebay to sell pesticides that he advertised as being able to kill COVID-19.
Marek Majtan has been charged via criminal complaint with mail fraud and violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.
An initial appearance is set for Sept. 11.
On April 8, Majtan filed a trade name with state officials for Capitol Cleaning Solutions. He allegedly purchased pesticides of unknown origin from someone on Facebook Marketplace whose last name he did not know.
He then allegedly repackaged the pesticides and made his own label with Environmental Protection Agency registration information for a discontinued product. He then advertised the cleaner as being approved by the EPA and CDC. He allegedly claimed the cleaner “Kills 99.9% Bacterias & Viruses” and “Kills Covid 19 & Seasonal Flu.”
Since May 19, Majtan allegedly sold his disinfectants on eBay without EPA authorization. He also appeared to sell the products on a website, making what investigators said were fraudulent claims that they were federally-registered products approved for use against the coronavirus.
Neither he nor his company ever received a company number from the EPA or submitted an application to the EPA.
The firm’s website said 1,231 bottles had been sold to 323 customers. Majtan admitted to agents he falsified those figures to entice buyers.
On May 20, EPA investigators and postal inspectors conducted an undercover purchase of two pesticides CCS sold on eBay. The package was delivered to FedEx and, executing a search warrant, agents seized five other packages sent by CCS destined for customers in Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts and Illinois.
Federal law requires pesticide labels to clearly include their name, brand and trademark; name and address of the producer or registrant; registration number and producing establishment’s number.
They must also contain a warning or caution statement that is adequate to protect human health or the environment. No such information was displayed on Majtan’s bottles, prosecutors said.
If convicted, he could face up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for mail fraud and up to one year in prison and a $25,000 fine for violating the pesticide law.