The FDA has rolled up yet another doctor in its campaign to punish practitioners who knowingly bought unapproved foreign drugs on the cheap, taking the risk of giving patients ineffective or even counterfeit medications, which some of them ended up doing.
Federal authorities in Canada last week raided the Winnipeg headquarters of CanadaDrugs.com but declined to say what prompted the raid, citing a court-ordered confidentiality order.
The FDA and Justice Department has extracted a half-million-dollar settlement from a California oncologist who is among doctors found to be buying unapproved cancer drugs and then charging state and federal programs for FDA-approved treatments. The agreement comes just weeks after a Kentucky doctor pleaded guilty to charges of doing the same thing.
Earlier this month the FDA stopped a shipment of what it believed to be Cialis manufactured in Australia that it said contained improper ingredients. Cialis maker Eli Lilly, however, said the product appeared to be counterfeit. It made no Cialis in Australia. Now the FDA is saying it has found Cialis fakes being shipped in the mail and is warning consumers to beware.
Organized crime has moved into selling counterfeit and compromised prescription drugs in Europe, exploiting the mishmash of customs laws and weak points in some border protection. Those weaknesses allowed the "Mafia" to get fake manifests, use suspect wholesalers, and sell counterfeits of Roche's Herceptin and other cancer drugs across Europe.
A Turkish man who admitted to smuggling counterfeit cancer drugs to the U.S. labeled as gifts or documents has been sentenced to 27 months in federal prison.
Counterfeiters managed to get fakes of some of Roche's ($RHHBY) top-selling cancer drugs, including Herceptin and MabThera/Rituxan, into the European market this summer. This, among other issues, has motivated Roche's Genentech to have specialty distributors handle these recently conterfeited drugs, as well as Avastin. This decision has outraged some hospitals.
Counterfeiters in Europe are displaying a fondness for mimicking high-priced Roche cancer drugs. For the second time in 5 months, authorities there have uncovered fakes, and the two cases appear not to be connected.
Authorities from 8 European Union countries, backed by Europol and Eurojust, have arrested a dozen suspects and seized more than €10 million worth of counterfeit drugs, mostly fakes of erectile dysfunction drugs that an organized crime group was selling online. The raid, announced Monday, came after an investigation that lasted nearly two years.
Researchers at the University of Michigan have developed an anti-counterfeiting technology based on clear plastic labels that reveal an image when someone breathes on them.