U.S. Department of Treasury Announces Sanctions Against Argentina-Based Fake Online Pharmacy

A press release from the U.S. Department of the Treasury has announced sanctions and criminal charges against an Argentinian-based Internet pharmacy business that allegedly sold illegally imported opioids and other medications via a series of websites branded ‘Goldpharma.”

According to the Department of the Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, “The Goldpharma network illustrates the sophisticated tactics drug traffickers and money launderers use to capitalize on the Internet and online pharmacy sites to sell highly addictive illicit narcotics around the world.”

The Wall Street Journal reports that GoldPharma was a Buenos Aires-based network of pharmacy websites that allegedly sold a variety of illegal and misbranded opioid medications without prescriptions to U.S. residents. While the indictment sites their distribution of illegal and misbranded opioid medications, the websites allegedly associated with the organization sold a whole host of pharmaceutical products. Among the sites they allegedly profited from were “rxpharmatoday.com, rxpharma24.com,and goldenpharma.com,” among others.

In addition to the Goldpharma organization and its subsidiary businesses being blacklisted, eight Argentinians have been sanctioned, five of whom were indicted in September in federal court in Wisconsin.

According to their indictment, Conrado Adolfo Frenzel, Jorge Alejandro Paura, Santiago Videmato, Luciano Brunetti, and Lucas Daniel Paura are alleged to have purchased illicit medications and painkillers from India, Romania, and Singapore for sale to U.S. customers via their website portals. The indictment also cites 25 pieces of residential real estate in Florida that were seized by authorities as part of the sanctions against GoldPharma.

The U.S. Treasury reports that seven U.S. companies owned by the GoldPharma organization have been blocked. They include a variety of payment and investment LLCs.

The U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control, with the assistance of Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and the Government of Argentina conducted this investigation.  Matthew D. Krueger, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, is prosecuting the criminal case.