July 8, 2024: U.S. legislators introduce a bill to curb fake pill sales on social media

Major Stories

A new bill would force social media to report online drug sales. An Indian man was arrested for allegedly selling fake cancer drugs. The FDA warned a website for selling fake Ozempic.

U.S. Representative Angie Craig and U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar introduced the Cooper Davis and Devin Norring Act, which would require social media to report the sale or distribution of fentanyl, methamphetamine, and other counterfeit controlled substances on their platforms. The bill is named for two teens who died of fentanyl poisoning after taking counterfeit prescription pills they acquired via Snapchat.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned the proprietors of Ozempen.com to stop selling unapproved semaglutide products. As the agency points out, “Drugs that have circumvented regulatory safeguards may be contaminated, counterfeit, contain varying amounts of active ingredients, or contain different ingredients altogether.”

H.R. 8918 was introduced on July 2. (Image: Facebook)

Screenshot from a TikTok referencing Dustin Moore in April 2024.

Domestic News

“MrInjector1” was sentenced for injecting patients with counterfeit substances.

Dustin Moore of Pasadena, Texas received a five-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to performing illegal cosmetic procedures without a medical license. Several victims of those procedures sued Moore, who went by “MrInjector1” on social media, for injecting them with fake Botox and a “mystery substance.” At least one woman suffered serious complications.

Police in Denver, Colorado arrest three suspects following the May 1 search of an Aurora residence that yielded five pill presses, other equipment, narcotics and firearms. Law enforcement also seized pill presses in South Bend, Indiana, Manchester, New Hampshire, and Anderson, South Carolina.

International News

Canada recalled an unapproved pain topical. A U.K. resident was jailed for selling unlicensed drugs.

Health Canada recalled a pain relief product, Cipla Omnigel Spray, because it was labeled as containing diclofenac diethylamine, a prescription drug, without market authorization.

United Kingdom resident Antoine Christopher Kolias received a three-and-a-half year prison sentence for distributing hundreds of thousands of pills of unlicensed medicines between 2018 and 2019, and again between 2020 and 2021. Kolias’ sales included “natural” supplements made with sildenafil sold on Amazon and eBay as well as tramadol, zopiclone and pregabalin.

Project Capsule’s January 2024 survey of consumer attitudes in Italy and Spain about online medicine sales recommended that authorities step up target education and awareness campaigns to emphasize the risks associated with illicit online pharmacies.

Male enhancement supplements like the ones that Kolias sold have been the subject of FDA consumer warnings.