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What: Officials seized 15,000 counterfeit pills and arrested nine people during raids in the Montreal region. Counterfeit Viagra and cancer drugs were among the seized pills.

When: August 6, 2009

Where: Montreal, Canada

Additional details:

According to the Montreal Gazette, the Royal Canadian Mounted Policy (RCMP) seized 15,000 counterfeit pills and arrested nine suspects during raids on August 6, 2009.

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Canadian Television (CTV) reported that the raids took place in 11 locations, including sex shops and private homes, and turned up fake medications including those used to treat cancer and erectile dysfunction. The drugs were being sold in stores, online and on the street, according to officials.

The Gazette reports the RCMP had been working in conjunction with Health Canada in an anti-fraud operation since February 2008. Police covertly purchased some of the fake medications over the last 18 months and had them analyzed in government labs.

Health Canada issued a warning against purchasing medications online. RCMP Officer Noel St-Hilaire said that this incident was the first of its kind in the province of Quebec, noting that they’ve seen counterfeit medications in other countries and that they are “coming into Canada now.”

The nine suspects arrested could face charges of fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud, infringement of a trademark and distribution of materials protected by copyright.

Related sources:

Mounties Bust Counterfeit Pill Ring,” CTV. August 7, 2009.
Counterfeit Prescription Drug Distribution Ring Dismantled by the RCMP,” Royal Canadian Mounted Police. August 7, 2009.
RCMP seize fake cancer drugs, Viagra in Montreal raid,” Montreal Gazette. August 7, 2009.