As reported by the Times Union, a Queensbury oncologist and his office manager wife agreed to pay a $500,000 fine for purchasing and using illegally imported unapproved chemotherapy drugs on his patients. Vincent and Milly Koh of Queensbury ran practices in Poughkeepsie and Glens Falls. The pair previously pleaded guilty in November 2017 according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
According to the plea agreements, the Kohs admitted to having regularly ordered an oncology drug called Mabthera from various online sources from July 2010 through March 2012. Some of the vials came with labels in foreign languages, but all of them were not FDA-approved. The Kohs pleaded to a misdemeanor and after sentencing, U.S. Attorney Grant C. Jaquith said that “Unlike prescription drugs picked up at a pharmacy, chemotherapeutic drugs generally are administered without any opportunity for patients to see the labeling, so cancer patients are particularly vulnerable to this sort of conduct.”
Scott J. Lampert, the Special Agent in Charge of the New York Regional Office of the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, said: “Patients deserve the security of knowing that the medication being prescribed to them is unadulterated, safeguarded, and properly manufactured.” The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Criminal Investigations investigated this case and Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph A. Giovannetti prosecuted the pair.