Signed into law last week, the PRO-IP Act is the most comprehensive IP enforcement legislation adopted by Congress in years. Not only does it increase the penalties for counterfeiting offenses that endanger public health and safety, it provides much-needed resources to at federal, state and local law enforcement levels. Additionally, the law creates the position of Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator within the Executive Office of the President. This new coordinator will chair an inter-agency committee charged with producing a Joint Strategic Plan to combat piracy and counterfeiting. The law also allocates money to hire and train new federal prosecutors, as well as requires the Attorney General to develop a comprehensive plan to prosecute the international organized crime behind the counterfeiting.
As transnational criminal organizations continue to ignore regulations and violate laws designed to insure the integrity of the many life-saving medicines widely available here in the United States, this new law sends a clear message that the production and sale of counterfeit drugs will not be tolerated.