Fake Drugs Have Real Consequences for Patients

Black market medicine is terrible for patients all over the world, including Americans. At best, counterfeit and substandard medicine may not adequately treat a patient's illness. At worst, counterfeit medicines may cause poisoning or death.

Each of the following stories mentions people who have been sickened or died after being treated with fake medicine. Every day, American patients are harmed when they break the closed U.S. drug supply.

Counterfeit Beauty Injections Claim the Lives of 2 in Southern Texas

March 5, 2016

Southern Texas has experienced a rash of injuries and 2 deaths that have resulted from counterfeit cosmetic injections. In 2014, Elva Navarro was prosecuted for administering counterfeit beauty injections. Navarro received a 5-year sentence for the death of one of her clients, and another 3 years for injecting her clients with a fake dermal filler that…

Death in LA County Highlights the Dangers of Counterfeit Medication

January 27, 2016

A County officials warn public about the toxic threat that fake medications pose, and share a tragic story about a woman whose efforts to save money by using non-FDA approved treatments led to her death. An NBC News story shares the details of a counterfeit medication death in Los Angeles County. Esmeralda Mendez described for…

Rogues Gallery Comics: An Illustrated Guide To Counterfeit Drug Crime

November 13, 2015

The Rogues Gallery Comic Book series tells the real-life stories of fake drug criminals and their cases. Volume one tells about the Greedy Doctor that lied to patients with no hope for a cure, the Master Counterfeiter whose greed drove him straight into the arms of US investigators, the Black Marketer who sold fake drugs to US doctors, and the mystery Criminal Mastermind responsible for introducing counterfeit cancer medication to U.S. oncology practices. In volume two, you’ll read about The Smooth Talker and his $150,000 car, the Canadian who pioneered the fake online pharmacy business model, and the Hero Nurses that stood between oncology patients and dangerous fake medications.

Medical Device King sold imported IUDs and counterfeit cancer drugs that poisoned an American patient

November 6, 2015

Update: On December 13, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated William Scully’s conviction because a lower court “declined to allow Scully to introduce evidence at his 2015 trial showing he sought legal advice about importing drugs with foreign labels from one of his lawyers.” Ultimately Scully pleaded guilty to one charge of…

Nationwide Epidemic of Counterfeit Pain Pills Containing Fentanyl Claims Lives in 23 States

October 23, 2015

On October 23, 2015, the San Francisco Department of Public Health released an urgent warning concerning deadly fentanyl disguised as the low-level anti-anxiety medication Xanax. 3 people in San Francisco died as a result of consuming the fentanyl-laced pills. Since that time there have been reported deaths and overdoses attributable to the fake pills in…

Black Market Cosmetic Injectables Threaten Americans

August 10, 2015

The United States has been experiencing an uptick in the number of patients being treated with fake and misbranded injectable cosmetic treatments. Learn more about these cases, which are one of the most common ways Americans are exposed to dangerous counterfeit medications. In June 2014, Elva Navarro, a spa owner in McAllen, Texas, pleaded guilty…

Dallas Pair Arrested After Client Found Dead from Fake Beauty Treatments

March 18, 2015

Denise Ross and Jimmy Joe “Alicia” Clark have been arrested in Dallas on murder charges stemming from their use of Hydrogel as a beauty injection treatment. Wykesha Reid’s body was found wrapped in gauze in Ross and Clark’s abandoned beauty salon. Even before Reid’s death, authorities had sought Ross and Clark for practicing medicine without…

California-based Company Sued for Allegedly Implanting Back Surgery Patients With Counterfeit Spinal Hardware

December 12, 2014

The former owner of a California hospital has pleaded guilty to participating in an illegal medical kickbacks conspiracy, and a medical equipment manufacturer has recalled of all of its spinal fusion hardware due to “performance failures that could cause patient harm.” The case is linked to more than two dozen lawsuits filed alleging that counterfeit…

Daniel Burke Shares his Perspective on the Danger Fake Online Pharmacies Pose at Interchange 2014

December 2, 2014

Special Agent Burke shared cases such as grandmother Betty Hunter’s run-in with counterfeit cancer medication.

USA Today Reports Counterfeit Drugs A Huge Portion of Fake Consumer Products Available for Sale Online

May 6, 2014

From chainsaws that come apart while in use to medications that don’t work or make people sick, products for sale online are increasingly being found to be counterfeited. An April 30th report in USA Today points out that dangerous fake goods are easily found for sale on the Internet, and counterfeit medication numbers among the…