Two Nigerians Accused of Pharmaceutical Theft

Two Nigerians have been charged with the theft of pharmaceuticals valued at $18.5 million Nigerian from a pharmacy in Lagos.

Uchenna Ogodo worked as a pharmacy attendant for ICEE Pharmaceutical Limited, according to Next, an African news source.

Prosecutor Innocent Effiong alleged before the Ebute Meta Magistrate’s Court that he and his accomplice, 35-year-old Patrick Okonkwo took 14,244 boxes of various pharmaceutical products from the pharmacy where he worked.

Specifically, Ogodo was accused of taking medication, including icethrocin tablets, from the pharmaceutical company’s International Trade Fair Complex.

It is then alleged that Ogodo sold the stolen pharmaceuticals to Okonkwo, who reportedly knew that it was stolen.

The theft of pharmaceuticals poses a number of serious risks. Often times the stolen drugs are cut with materials that may lessen the medication’s efficacy or make them toxic. Even if the criminals do not tamper with the drugs, it is rare that they will store or handle them properly, which can hurt the medication’s quality, potentially harming consumers once it is reentered into the pharmaceutical supply chain.