LEBANON COUNTY, Pa. — After a series of videos were released on social media accusing a Lebanon County restaurant of acting as a conduit to coordinate distribution of Ivermectin, an alternative, non-FDA approved treatment for COVID-19, officials have confirmed they are investigating the allegations.
Taste of Sicily, owned by Christine Mason's mother, Silvana Drill, and operated by restaurant manager Mike Magano, have used their Facebook page throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to pronounce their views, and to show that they wouldn't abide by some of the COVID-19 restrictions Gov. Tom Wolf put into place for restaurants during 2020.
Drill told FOX43 that as of summer 2021, Mason has not worked for Taste of Sicily, but Mason controls and routinely posts on the Taste of Sicily Facebook page.
In a video posted on the Taste of Sicily Facebook page on Jan. 26, Mason can be seen telling people to "read between the lines" and that she has "life-saving information."
Mason claims in the video she has a "resource that can save your life if you're sick," and encourages people to reach out to her for more information.
In the video, Mason says that she has "H" or "I" and you can "get it tomorrow" because it "ships from Pennsylvania."
Hydroxychloroquine, another non-FDA approved treatment for COVID-19, has come under attention in recent months as well.
In a separate video, Mason says that people don't have to pay her, but she suggests a donation.
Finally, in a TikTok video posted by @gumbasman121, Mason's husband can be seen saying he got COVID-19, "but thank god my wife got me Ivermectin."
Now, a video posted by @thatdaneshguy on Twitter, is accusing Taste of Sicily of helping distribute prescriptions of Ivermectin, an anti-parasitic, via prescriptions from an unknown doctor.
When FOX43 reached out to Taste of Sicily for comment, they responded that Mason was awaiting advice from a lawyer before responding to the accusations.
Earlier today, the Taste of Sicily Facebook page created this post:
FOX43 reached out to the Pa. Attorney General's Office, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's Office, the Pa. Dept. of Agriculture, the Lebanon County District Attorney's Office and the Palmyra Borough Police Department to see if an investigation into the allegations was underway.
The Pa. Attorney General's Office has confirmed that the Palmyra police have referenced the case to them, but they "cannot confirm or deny our office's involvement in the investigation."
Lebanon County District Attorney Pier Hess Graff responded with the following statement:
Yesterday my office received phone calls and emails which made various complaints against Taste of Sicily; the majority of those were done anonymously. We reached out to law enforcement and inquired if any additional complaints were made to individual police departments. Police indicated they received complaints, and a preliminary investigation showed allegations of misconduct which potentially spanned multiple counties. Our jurisdiction covers only Lebanon County. A referral to the Attorney General’s Office was already made by the police department itself. As a result, we did not take any further steps on the matter. The AG maintains statewide jurisdiction and thus is the appropriate entity to look into multiple-county criminal allegations.
Pier Hess Graf, District Attorney
FOX43 has not heard back from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration or the Pa. Dept. of Agriculture as of this posting.