Woman ‘posed as nurse’ to give dangerous ‘vampire facials’ to 50 people
A Las Vegas woman allegedly posed as a nurse and performed dangerous "vampire facials" on patients.
Maria Sabata Gutierrez, 49, was arrested on November 18, two months after a woman turned up in hospital with "swelling and pain on her face and head, and bumps in her mouth".
She said she'd undergone a vampire facial, a beauty treatment in which blood is injected into the face to activate collagen cells, from a woman called Maria who had been driving to customers' homes to perform them since March or April.
"(The customer) described the facials as Gutierrez drawing blood from (the customer's) arm," Las Vegas Police said.
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"The blood would then be placed into a machine which separated the blood, it would then be re-injected onto her face."
A vampire facial will typically cost about $1,000 (£750) when performed by a licensed medical professional, but Gutierrez charged her clients just $200 (£150).
"In addition to the Vampire Facials, (the customer) was also getting a similar procedure with her blood being re-injected in her buttocks," police added.
Only licensed nurses under a physician's supervision are allowed to perform vampire facials.
Witnesses say Gutierrez always wore scrubs and carried a backpack containing supplies and a blood centrifuge machine when treating customers.
She allegedly told one woman she used to work for a medical office where she regularly performed the facials, but had lost her licence and was trying to get it back.
When a concerned doctor treating the woman suffering adverse effects called Gutierrez, she said she was a trained nurse "operating out of her trunk" using equipment ordered online from Mexico.
The doctor told Gutierrez to stop performing the facials and informed the police, who began an undercover operation.
Posing as clients, cops set up a meeting with Gutierrez who explained how the procedure worked.
They set up an appointment and the next day Gutierrez was arrested. In custody she admitted she is not a registered nurse and has performed vampire facials on 50 or 60 people, it is alleged.
She was charged with furnishing a dangerous drug without a prescription, acting as a medical practitioner without a license, possession to sell drugs and acting as a nurse without a license.
A preliminary hearing in the case has been scheduled for March 2021.
If performed without proper safety precautions, the vampire facial — popularised by Kim Kardashian — can lead to infections and has even been linked to cases of HIV.
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