A British resident was sentenced to twelve months imprisonment for the importation and possession of counterfeit medicine in Northampton Crown Court.

Victor Cheke, 42, was convicted of importing packages of medicinal products originating from China and India which were intercepted by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) en route to Cheke.

Analysis of the drugs revealed that the medicines were counterfeit even though the branding on the packet and tablet were identical to the genuine product. The fake medications mimicked popular erectile dysfunction medications in shape, label, and color, but did not contain the proper ingredients, reported the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

Cheke pleaeded guilty to ten offenses including importing medicines without holding the appropriate license and possession of medicinal products without a marketing authorization, and unauthorized use of trademark.

MHRA Head of Operations, Danny Lee-Frost, said, “This case highlights the ability of criminals to supply counterfeit medicines which can easily be mistaken for the real thing.

“Medicines bought from illegitimate sources pose a real threat to people’s health because they simply don’t know what they are getting and dealers are only interested in making a profit.

“We strongly advise people to protect themselves by only purchasing their medicines from approved sources such as bona-fide pharmacies and only taking Prescription Only Medicines after an appropriate consultation with their GP.”

By S. Imber