Canada Takes Part in Global Operation against Fake Drugs

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in New Brunswick were part of the recent global effort, termed Operation Pangea, to fight the sale of counterfeit drugs from illegal online pharmacies.

Law enforcement officials warned consumers that many of the websites that claim to be Canadian pharmacies are in fact run from other countries around the world and are trading on the country’s name, according to the Times and Transcript.

“Worldwide, this is a huge problem and the RCMP’s priority is to protect the health and safety of Canadians,” said Moncton-based Federal Enforcement Section Sergeant Mark Bridges.

Bridges said that many of these illegal online pharmacies that claim to be based in Canada cut medication with brick dust and use antifreeze or other chemicals to dye the pills in an attempt to make them look like a particular brand-name medication.

“You just don’t know what you’re getting when you order from those websites,” Bridges told the news source.

According to the news provider, Operation Pangea saw law enforcement officials from more than 40 countries around the world take part in the action to reduce the amount of counterfeit drugs being sold by illegal online pharmacies. The campaign resulted in suspects being arrested across the globe and the seizure of thousands of doses of counterfeit drugs.

During the operation, the RCMP in New Brunswick worked with the National Association of Federal Retirees to increase awareness about the dangers of counterfeit drugs around the region.

Seniors in the Moncton area were encouraged to attend information sessions about how to spot websites that may be illegal online pharmacies.

Bridges said that during the sessions he and the seniors surfed the internet looking for such websites and were able to find a dozen easily.

The sergeant also encouraged the public to report sites that they suspect may be illegal online pharmacies.

“If you suspect that yourself or a loved one have been victimized, or if you come across a site that triggers alarm bells, you should report it to the authorities,” he told the news source. “Don’t endanger yourself by making a purchase.”

Bridges said that many people frequent such websites looking for a discount but the consequences for saving a few bucks could turn out to be deadly.