Millionaires 'flew 1,000 miles and posed as motel workers to skip vaccine queue'

The CEO of a casino company and his actor wife have been fined after they allegedly flew 1,700 miles and posed as motel workers to jump to the front of the vaccine queue.

Rodney and Ekaterina Baker, 55, and 32, are said to have chartered a private plane to fly to Beaver Creek – a community of around 100 in Canada’s Yukon territory – where the Moderna vaccine was being administered to vulnerable Indigenous residents.

The millionaire couple flew from Vancouver to Whitehorse on January 19, where they were supposed to adhere to the mandatory 14-day quarantine period.

But two days later, they allegedly chartered the jet to the remote community on the Alaska border, where elderly members of the White River First Nation were receiving the jab.

When they arrived at a mobile vaccination site, they claimed they were motel workers so they could receive the vaccine, reported Yukon News.

After being vaccinated, they asked for a ride back to the airport which raised suspicions among workers at the mobile clinic. They called the motel which confirmed the couple did not work there.

After Yukon law enforcement were tipped off, they went to check the accommodation the couple had listed as their quarantine address in Whitehorse but found they had already left.

Officials discovered the pair at the airport just as they were preparing to fly back to their home in Vancouver and fined them $1,150 (almost £670) each for breaking public health rules.

They received two fines each – one for failing to self-isolate and another for failing to follow their signed declaration – and were charged under the territory’s Civil Emergency Measures Act.

Yukon community services minister John Streicker told CBC News: ‘Effectively what they did was they put our community and our isolation team at risk.

‘I’m pretty angry at the whole thing.’

White River First Nation Chief Angela Demit said the area had been chosen to receive the vaccine due to its high-risk elderly population.

She said: ‘We are deeply concerned by the actions of individuals who put our Elders and vulnerable people at risk to jump the line for selfish purposes.’

Rodney Baker, who was the CEO of the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation (GCGC), resigned on Sunday in the wake of his Covid-19 breach.

His Russian-born Ekaterina Baker last year appeared in Christmas film Fatman and comedy Chick Fight.

She has since deleted her Instagram, but prior to the incident she had urged her followers to adhere to coronavirus rules as ‘it’s the right thing to do’, Yukon News reported.

The actor posted a video of herself on March 23 holding a notepad explaining why she was staying at home.

‘During this unique and tender time I stay home for: all the kids so they don’t have to say goodbye to their parents and grandparents too soon,’ she is said to have written.

‘I stay home to be part of the solution. Everyone, stay home. It’s the right thing to do.’

Chuck Keeling, spokesman for the casino company, said: ‘As a matter of policy, Great Canadian does not comment on personnel matters.’

‘As a company, Great Canadian takes health and safety protocols extremely seriously, and our company strictly follows all directives and guidance issued by public health authorities in each jurisdiction where we operate.

‘Our adherence to those directives is demonstrated by the fact that we have promptly suspended operations at our facilities whenever directed to by the authorities.

‘Our overriding focus as a company is doing everything we can to contribute to the containment of COVID-19.’

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