News Coverage

The Partnership for Safe Medicines has been publishing information about the counterfeit drug problem around the world for more than a decade. With experts leading the organization and a committed and passionate set of writers and editors, our content is more in-depth than many other sources, which simply copy links to the news from other websites.

Nigerian Operation Closes More than 1,200 Illegal Pharmacies

October 29, 2010

Local Nigerian authorities recently shut down more than 1,200 illegal pharmacies in Lagos for selling substandard and counterfeit drugs. The Lagos State Task Force on Counterfeit, Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Processed Foods reportedly shut down 1,253 illegal pharmaceutical outlets at Idumota, at the Lagos Central Business District (LCBD) on Lagos Island, according to the newspaper…

Police Looking for Info on Large Pharmaceutical Theft

October 29, 2010

A large pharmaceutical theft occurred at a drug manufacturing facility in Ontario and now the police are asking the public for help. Niagara Regional Police said that in late August a large quantity of pseudoephedrine was stolen from the Fort Erie pharmaceutical manufacturing company in Fort Erie, Ontario, according to the Buffalo News. After having…

Canada Takes Part in Global Operation against Fake Drugs

October 28, 2010

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in New Brunswick were part of the recent global effort, termed Operation Pangea, to fight the sale of counterfeit drugs from illegal online pharmacies. Law enforcement officials warned consumers that many of the websites that claim to be Canadian pharmacies are in fact run from other countries around the…

Vietnam Has Strong Sentencing in Place for Drug Counterfeiters

October 28, 2010

Counterfeit drugs are becoming an increasingly serious problem in Vietnam but there are stern punishments in place for those who are caught dealing in this nefarious trade, according to Viet Nam News. The news source reports that Vietnam’s Criminal Code has sentencing guidelines that provide for two to seven years of imprisonment for those caught…

Counterfeit Drug Criminals Involve Innocent Neighbor

October 27, 2010

A UK grandmother got quite a surprise when a team of policeman raided her home expecting to find counterfeit drugs. Police entered Margaret Waite’s Lockeridge home hoping to find criminals, and instead found a 69-year-old that pointed out that while they were on the right street, they were in the wrong house, according to Gazette…

Missouri Man Pleads Guilty to Selling Fake Drugs

October 27, 2010

A man from Missouri recently pleaded guilty to federal charges of distributing counterfeit drugs. Mark Hughes was accused of ordering fake erectile dysfunction medication from overseas and then sold them in an illegal, unlicensed pharmacy and on the street, according to the

Alabama to Track Online Sales of Pseudophedrine

October 27, 2010

Alabama will implement a state law January 2011 to keep track of pseudophedrine sales through an electronic database. Attempting to curb the manufacture of methamphetamines, which The Drug Enforcement Agency called the number one drug threat in Alabama for the second year in a row, the state is now requiring all pseudophedrine purchases to be…

CVS to Pay $78 Million in Methamphetamine Control Penalties

October 26, 2010

CVS repeatedly failed to properly monitor pseudophedrine sales according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office and has agreed to pay $77.6 million in fines and returned profits. Insufficient monitoring gave methamphetamine traffickers in Southern California and Clark County, NV, access to “large amounts” of pseudophedrine, which led to a rise in methamphetamine production in California. CVS…

Eastern Europe Toughening Stance on Fake Drugs

October 26, 2010

Eastern Europe plays a major role in the counterfeit drug trade, said experts at a recent regional meeting. The two-day meeting was held in the capital of Romania, Bucharest, featured more than 120 anti-counterfeit specialists from Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Ukraine, reports AFP. Hungarian customs officer Karolyi Szep said that Eastern…

Google Amends Complaint: Adds Four Defendants to Online Pharmacy Case

October 25, 2010

On October 19, 2010, Google’s attorneys filed an amended complaint in US District Court against four others accusing them of violating the AdWords Program agreement to entice consumers to online pharmacies not approved by the National Association of Board of Pharmacies VIPPS certification program.

In addition to the two defendants original named, Omar Jackman and John Doe “Simon,” the complaint now adds Gregory Gavin, Amanda Odell, Joey Patron and Gina Wyant. Defendants Gavin, Odell and Patron reside in Clarkesville, Tennessee, according to the complaint and defendant Wyant resides in Columbiana, Ohio.

The complaint states that “on information and belief” the defendants worked together. Gavin allegedly registered a domain name, and then all four defendants allegedly opened a number of AdWords accounts to advertise the domain name. The complaint states the defendants were not verified by VIPPS, which is required by the Google AdWords agreement, in order to advertise pharmaceuticals.

Microsoft IP Addresses Hijacked by Illegal Online Pharmacies

October 25, 2010

A group of Russian criminals have been using internet addresses belonging to Microsoft to re-route consumers to more than 1,000 sites, including a number of illegal online pharmacies that may be selling counterfeit drugs, according to The Register. The news source reports search results from Microsoft’s own servers show that since at least September 22, 1,025…

International Technological Capacity Building Undertaken by USP

October 25, 2010

A new initiative between the United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) and six government drug control laboratories in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has been undertaken to improve the governments’ drug testing capabilities. Attempting to facilitate the development of broader technological expertise in the government drug testing laboratories, The MENA Regional Laboratory Network “aims…

Israel Authorities Catch Smuggler with Counterfeit Drugs at Airport

October 25, 2010

A man was recently caught trying to smuggle more than 5,000 doses of counterfeit drugs into Israel. Authorities seized Chen Ben-Zion at Ben Gurion International Airport, after seeing the counterfeit drugs in an x-ray scanner, according to Haaretz.com. Ben-Zion arrived in Israel on a flight from Georgia. Authorities pulled him aside and told him that he…

Philippines Doctor Facing Counterfeit Drug Charges

October 22, 2010

A doctor in the Philippines is facing charges of expired, smuggled and counterfeit drugs. Edwin Pinili of the Pinili Clinic in Calumpang village is facing charges from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Bureau of Food and Drugs (BFAD), according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer. Dominic Cerro, special investigator of the NBI’s Sarangani District…

Egyptian Health Ministry Launches Safe Medicines Campaign

October 21, 2010

On Sunday October 17th, the Egyptian Ministry of Health announced a new campaign entitled "Your Source of Cure Guarantees Treatment," aiming to address counterfeit and contraband drug use and smuggling. Kamal Sabra, assistant to the Health Minister for Pharmacology Affairs, said a consumers now have access to a reporting hotline for unregistered drugs.  He also…

Sri Lanka Holds Conference on Fake Drugs

October 21, 2010

The Sri Lanka Chamber of Pharmaceutical Industry (SLCPI) joined with the U.S. Embassy, the American Chamber of Commerce and other entities to host the first of four workshops on "Protecting Sri Lankan Families from counterfeit drugs," according to the Daily Mirror. This initial workshop was held on October 17 in Colombo. The news source reports that…

Pangea III Impacts Irish Online Drug Sellers

October 20, 2010

Ireland a significant player in INTERPOL's recent fake drug bust, Pangea III. According to the Irish Times, a co-ordinated Interpol operation targeting the sale of counterfeit and illegal drugs from online pharmacies netted the phony medicines. The Irish Medicines Board (IMB), the Revenue Commissioners’ Customs Service and Irish police were also involved in the operation, reports…

ID Method for Illicit Drugs Could Help Analyze Fake Medicines

October 20, 2010

A new method for analyzing illicit drugs can also be used as an anti-counterfeiting technology to help with the identification of fake medicines. The new method involves the identification and confirmation of illegal drugs and their salt forms, which is the form in which many illicit drugs are found, according to a news release. The method…

Zimbabwe’s Drug Lab Receives Certification

October 20, 2010

Zimbabwe's drug testing lab, which helps to protect the country from counterfeit drugs, recently received a commendation. The International Standards Organization (ISO) recently bestowed ISO 17025 certification upon the Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe's (MCAZ) drug-testing laboratories, states AllAfrica.com. According to the ISO, 17025 Certification "is for use by laboratories in developing their management system for…

Major Pharmaceutical Cargo Theft Committed in California

October 19, 2010

Two criminals disguised as police officers allegedly committed a major pharmaceutical theft when stole a delivery truck. Los Angeles police Sergeant Mitzi Grasso, said the truck was delivering drugs to a Rite Aid in the San Fernando Valley in the early morning on October 7 when two men wielding semiautomatic handguns approached the driver, according…

Government Supplied Anti-Malarials Work but Market Drugs are Fake

October 19, 2010

Government supplies of anti-malarial drugs are effective and genuine, reassured Nigeria’s National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP), while market drugs are risky and potentially fake. Science and Development Network reports that Nigerian drug quality concerns have triggered government efficacy trials of two different combination therapies for malaria (artemether and lumefantrine; artesunate and amodiaquine). The NMCP tested…

US FDA Participates in Pangea III – 274 Websites Closed Down

October 18, 2010

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and a number of other regulatory and international bodies recently completed International Internet Week of Action (IIWA), which took place to help limit the sales of counterfeit drugs by illegal online pharmacies. A wide range of internationl bodies helped to sponsor IIWA including INTERPOL, the World Health Organization's International…

Analytical Tools Initiative – FDA 5 Year Technology Push

October 18, 2010

The Food and Drug Administration is prioritizing IT as part of its five-year strategic plan, including accelerating a program to build innovative devices to improve field and laboratory analysis. "Advances in regulatory science are critical to effectively translate cutting-edge developments in science and technology into promising products and therapies for the Americans who need them. Americans…

New Zealand Seizes Fake Drugs in Global Campaign

October 18, 2010

Customs officers in New Zealand recently seized more than 400 packages that were suspected of containing counterfeit drugs as part of an international, week-long effort to crack down on the sale of fake medicines from online pharmacies. According to Stuff.co.nz, 34 of the parcels seized by the country's Medsafe organization were confiscated because they either were…

K24

October 18, 2010

  Kenyan news station K24 courtesy of youtube.com

Report: Kenya Takes Action Against Counterfeit Drugs

October 18, 2010

Kenya has been working hard to ensure that counterfeit drugs do not enter its borders and provide those in the country with some of the best healthcare in Africa.

According to Professor Anyang’ Nyong’o, the head of Kenya’s Ministry of Medical Services, criminals from other African countries mark boxes with counterfeit drugs as coming from Kenya’s pharmaceutical industry, reports K24TV. But Nyong’o says the country is making improvements to its system.

“We’ve become wiser than them,” he told the news source.

These improvements encompass two main strategies, according to the news provider’s report.

The first is improved border security, which will allow Kenya to control what is and isn’t allowed to enter the country.

Online Pharmacy Patrons Threatened with Extortion

October 15, 2010

A North Carolina sheriff is warning residents of a phone scam being perpetrated by people claiming to be Drug Enforcement Administration agents, targeting people who have used online pharmacies. Carteret County Sheriff Asa Buck said the caller tells the victim that such purchases are illegal, and now they must pay a fine. In most cases,…

Anti-Counterfeiting Technology Focuses on Drug Capsules

October 15, 2010

There are many anti-counterfeiting technologies that are used on drug packaging, but a new one utilizes nano-technology to encode prescription drug capsules before they’re even filled. The new anti-counterfeiting technology claims to be able to track and verify the authenticity of every dose from its manufacture to its consumption, according to the October issue of…

Partnership for Safe Medicines Commends Successful Global Operation Targeting Online Fake Drug Sellers

October 14, 2010

The Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) today applauded a multi-national effort that resulted in 76 people being arrested or placed under investigation for selling counterfeit drugs online. Operation Pangea III was coordinated by INTERPOL.

INTERPOL Video On the Dangers of Illegal Online Drug Purchase

October 14, 2010

  INTERPOL Video on the Dangers of Illegal Online Drug Purchase courtesy of INTERPOL

Global Arrests For Drug Counterfeiters in INTERPOL Sweep

October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

Lyon, France – INTERPOL has announced that 45 countries took part in a week of sweeps targeting the sale of counterfeit and illegal medicines over the internet. 76 criminals were arrested around the globe and 11,000 packages of fake drugs were impounded by regulators and customs officials. In total 290 online pharmacies selling fake and illegal drugs were shut down.

In total 290 online pharmacies selling fake and illegal drugs were shut down.

International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering Publishes White Paper on Supply Chain Security

October 14, 2010

The International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering recently put out a White Paper that suggests ways to increase supply chain security. The ISPE White Paper states that its purpose is to present “how an integrated approach can facilitate supply chain security by suggesting ways of augmenting the pharmaceutical quality system to prevent and detect adulteration, counterfeiting,…

Millions worth of fake drugs seized in South Korea

October 14, 2010

The government of South Korea recently revealed that it had seized $5.58 billion worth of counterfeit goods since 2006, including a substantial quantity of fake medicines. According to a report submitted by the Korea Customs Service to the Strategy and Finance Committee of the National Assembly, $157.8 million of fake drugs had been seized by…

Europe Pays High Healthcare Cost for Fraud, Including Fake Drugs

October 13, 2010

The European Union loses more than €50 billion each year because of healthcare fraud, including the provision of counterfeit medicines. The European Healthcare Fraud and Corruption Network (EHFCN) recently revealed research at its annual conference in Brussels that fraud in the healthcare system is costing the European Union €50 billion each year, according to EurActiv…

Anti-counterfeiting technology working in Nigeria’s fight against fake drugs

October 13, 2010

Nigeria’s National Agency for Foods and Drugs Administrations and Control (NAFDAC) recently announced that its utilization of sophisticated anti-counterfeiting technologies has so far been effective in the fight against counterfeit drugs. Director-General of NAFDAC Dr. Paul Orhii speaking through the Deputy Director Enforcement, Garba Macdonald, said that the agency had destroyed 450 million Nigerian naira…

FDA Warns of Potential Danger in Buying Pet Meds Online

October 12, 2010

The dangers posed by online pharmacies and the drugs they sell is becoming increasingly well known. However, consumers may overlook the fact that they are dealing with unscrupulous individuals when they buy pet medication over the internet. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says that it has found a number of illegal online pharmacies that…

Korean Study Highlights Dangers of Buying ED Drugs from Online Pharmacies

October 12, 2010

A recent Korean study showed that buying erectile dysfunction medication online can pose serious health risks. The Korean researchers presented their findings at the recent 105th Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Urological Association, according to ModernMedicine.com. Dr. Kewon Min of Busan Paik Hospital in Busan, Korea, said it could be very dangerous to buy…

Anti-Counterfeiting Refrigerator Uses RFID Technology

October 12, 2010

A combination of new technologies is being used to secure drug supplies. A new intelligent refrigerator uses RFID to monitor contents. It is expected to help fight against the theft of pharmaceuticals, contamination and counterfeit distribution. In August, a patent was issued for an intelligent refrigerator [pdf] to store pharmaceutical products. The refrigerator is intended…

Partnership for Safe Medicines First Annual Interchange Conference Huge Success

October 12, 2010

“It is sad to realize that we live in a world in which some criminals are willing to maximize profits by placing poisons in products like infant formula, toothpaste and medically necessary drugs. But it is a reality we must face. And, more importantly, it is a reality that we must become more proactive in…

Police Arrest 2 in Connection to Attempted $15,000 Pharmaceutical Theft

October 11, 2010

Washington state police recently arrested two people who are suspected of the theft of pharmaceuticals. The two suspects allegedly tried to steal a large metal safe with more than $15,000 in prescription drugs out of an Olympia, Washington, pharmacy, according to the Tacoma News Tribune. Jack Frederick Boysen and Marissa Cathryn Cavanaugh are under suspicion…

Interpol Russia Launches Campaign to Fight Counterfeit Antibiotics and Others

October 8, 2010

Interpol Russia recently announced that it would start a major operation against fake drugs. Rossiyskaya Gazeta announced the operation Monday September 27, 2010. The head of Russia’s Interpol Bureau, General Timur Lakhonin, said that the operation would seek the sources of counterfeit drugs in the country, reports the ITAR-TASS News Agency. “At present, a special…

Thailand Agencies Join Forces to Combat Fake Drugs

October 8, 2010

Thailand recently launched a government-wide effort to fight the counterfeit drug trade in the country. Nine government agencies recently signed a memorandum of understanding to join together to fight the trade of fake drugs, according to The Nation. These agencies are the Customs Department, Food and Drug Administration, Department of Special Investigation, Pharmaceutical Research and…

NABP Acquires AWARxE

October 7, 2010

The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) recently announced the purchase AWARxE, a website and campaign that seeks to educate the public about the dangers presented by illegal online pharmacies. AWARxE was started in 2007 by the Minnesota Pharmacists Foundation after it heard about the story of Justin Pearson, a 24 year old who…

Bangkok Police Raid Nets Counterfeit Drug Haul

October 7, 2010

A task force in Bangkok, Thailand, recently raided four drug store houses and found more than 200 varieties of counterfeit drugs. The task force, made up of police and health officials, were tipped off that the stockrooms in the Din Daeng district were distribution points for fake drugs, according to the Bangkok Post. The drugs…

Feds Seize $21 Million in Fake Drugs and Goods

October 6, 2010

Federal agents recently seized more than $21 million in counterfeit drugs and other phony items at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The 10-day operation, dubbed Operation Safe Summer, ran from September 7 to September 17 and saw a wide range of counterfeit products be seized, according to The Cincinnati Equirer. The operation was part of…

Nigeria has a Long, Sad History with Counterfeit Drugs

October 6, 2010

Counterfeit drugs affect every country in the world but few have been as hard hit by the scourge of phony medications like Nigeria. A number of incidents over the past few decades illustrate the problems the African nation has had with counterfeit drugs. In 1989, three children died at the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital…

Drug-Resistant TB Partially Caused by Counterfeit Drugs

October 5, 2010

The rise of a strain of tuberculosis that is resistant to medications is on the rise in East Africa and is part of the result of the unknowing use of counterfeit drugs. There are two types of TB that have become resistant to medicine, multi-drug resistant TB and extremely resistant TB, and the prevalence of…

Canadian Steroid Ring Bust Uncovers Counterfeit Drugs

October 5, 2010

Police in Edmonton, Canada, recently busted an illegal steroid ring and found that the members were also in possession of counterfeit drugs. Police are calling the ring a family-run steroid lab and distribution center and during the bust found $250,000 in illegal steroids and a quantity of fake erectile dysfunction medication, according to the Toronto…

eNom and LegitScript to ID Illegal Online Pharmacies

October 4, 2010

On September 21, 2010, LegitScript LLC, and eNom, Inc., the
world’s largest ICAAN accredited domain name wholesaler announced an
agreement to work together
to identify customers who are violating
eNom’s terms of service by operating online pharmacies in violating
with U.S. law.

“As the largest domain name wholesaler, we take our role and
responsibility very seriously. As such, it is our policy to cooperate
with law enforcement agencies, and where we have evidence of illegal
conduct from law enforcement or another trusted source, we take
appropriate action, including terminating domain name registration
services,” said Taryn Naidu, senior vice president and general
manager at eNom. “Our partnership with LegitScript provides us with a
trustworthy source of information regarding the illegal sale of
pharmaceutical drugs.”

Texas Seniors Take Risks By Patronizing Online Canadian Pharmacies

October 4, 2010

Texans order prescription drugs online from Canadian pharmacies in an effort to save money, however they may be putting themselves at risk. According to the Canadian International Pharmacy Association, approximately 68,000 people in Texas order more than 200,000 drug shipments from Canadian pharmacies, reports the Dallas Morning-News. Potentially cheaper drugs may also be riskier, according…

Pennsylvania Pharmacists Indicted For Running Illegal Online Pharmacy

October 4, 2010

Update:  On June 23, 2011, Marks was sentenced to 51 months in prison for the Internet distribution of prescription drugs without valid prescriptions.  Reports the DOJ, Marks made more than $1 million  by selling controlled substances without prescriptions over the Internet. “At his guilty plea, Marks admitted to illegally distributing pain medications such as hydrocodone…

NAFDAC Implements New Technologies to Fight Fake Drugs

October 4, 2010

Dr. Paul Orhii, the director-general of Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), recently announced the implementation of two anti-counterfeiting technologies. One of the technologies is known as Mobile Authentication Service. With this technology, each drug package is printed with a code that consumers text on their mobile phones to government…

NAFDAC Teams with China to Fight Fake Drugs

October 1, 2010

Dr. Paul Orhii, the Director-General of Nigeria’s National Agency for Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), recently announced that the government body will be working with China to fight the importation of counterfeit drugs. Speaking at an event in Lagos, Orhii said that Nigeria was the largest market in Africa for pharmaceutical products from China,…

Pharmacist Risks Life to Stop Drug Theft

October 1, 2010

A Florida pharmacy owner recently averted a pharmaceutical theft when he wrestled the would-be robber’s gun out of his hand. Snehal Patel owns Money Saver Pharmacy in New Port Richey, Florida, and told the St. Petersburg Times that he stays calm under pressure. “You have to be calm,” said the 37-year-old Patel. “That’s when you…

Minnesota County Encourages Drug Disposal Program

September 30, 2010

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has scheduled a drug take-back day for September 25 to help prevent the theft of pharmaceuticals, but one community has decided to take the idea to the next level. Minnesota’s Chisago County Sheriff’s Department and Environmental Services recently introduced a permanent drug take-back box at Rush City Hall, according to…

Indonesian Demand Spurs Fake Drug Market

September 30, 2010

Demand for medication in Indonesia keeps the counterfeit drug trade going, according to an official. Speaking in Jakarta, Erita Harun from the United States Department of Justices’ International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program (ICITAP) Indonesia said that drug counterfeiters will resort to virtually anything in their quest to make money off of fake medication, according…

Google Lawsuit Against Online Pharmacies Details Adwords Violations

September 29, 2010

In Google’s law suit complaint filed September 21, 2010, online pharmacy advertisers violated the Terms and Conditions required for AdWords use and circumvented the automated monitoring systems.

Google named two domain names, www.4rx-online.com, which is no longer operating, and www.onlinedrpharmacy.com, which is still operational. Neither domain name appears in the VIPPS database. Google requires VIPPS verification as a prerequisite for AdWords engagement.

In addition, LegitScript, which uses pharmacy verification standards recognized by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy identifies both pharmacies as “rogue pharmacies” and says each site, “intentionally or knowingly…1. violates, appears to violate, or encourages violation of Federal or state law or regulation; 2. does not adhere to accepted standards of medicine and/or pharmacy practice, including standards of safety; and/or 3. engages in fraudulent or deceptive business practices.”

Nigerian State Revives Agency to Fight Counterfeit Drugs

September 29, 2010

A Nigerian state has revitalized a program to help rid the area of counterfeit drugs. Speaking to the Pharmaceutical Association of Nigerian Students (PANS), the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, Dr. Peter Ugbodaga, said that the Edo State would bring back its Essential Drug Project (EDP) to help fight the scourge of counterfeit…

Florida Police Investigate Theft of Pharmaceuticals

September 29, 2010

A Florida sheriff’s department is currently investigating a theft of pharmaceuticals that took place recently. SNN Local News 6 reported that the owner of the Medical Arts Pharmacy on Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota County returned one morning and found the front door of his establishment smashed. Local police told the news provider that it…

Pfizer, Vodafone and Sproxil Join Efforts to Reduce Fake Drugs and Improve Healthcare in Africa

September 28, 2010

In New York on September 21, 2010, Ponni Subbiah, MD, MPH, Vice President, Pfizer Global Access, announced a joint commitment with Vodafone, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare in The Gambia and International Health Partners, to support the “SMS for Health” initiative, aimed at improving access and reliability of medicine supply…

Police Arrest Suspect in Two Pharmaceutical Thefts

September 28, 2010

A woman who was accused of two pharmaceutical thefts was recently arrested in Florida. Corey Bradley is being charged with pharmaceutical thefts at the Kmart in Orange City, Florida, and another at the Winn-Dixie on Howland Boulevard in Deltona, Florida, according to the Daytona Beach News-Journal. In the Winn-Dixie theft, Bradley allegedly brandished a handgun…

Google AdWords Used by Rogue Pharmacies

September 27, 2010

Google has filed a civil action in Federal Court against fifty-two individuals alleged to have violated the terms of AdWords to promote fraudulent drug sales.

In a complaint filed in Federal Court in San Jose, CA, Google “seeks to stop rogue online pharmaceutical sellers” from using Google’s AdWords advertising network. Two defendants, Omar Jackman and John Doe “Simon” were named, and 50 others are “individuals whose true identities and locations are unknown.”

Google states in the complaint that “Google prohibits the promotion of online pharmacies and prescription drugs except under specific circumstances. Google allows ads targeting the United States to promote online pharmacy websites only if the advertised website is verified by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy’s Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites (“VIPPS”) program.

Fake Drugs in Kenya Reduced ‘Significantly’

September 27, 2010

Pharmacists in the African nation of Kenya say that their nation struggles with counterfeit drugs because of the large number of medications that are registered in the country. There are more than 11,000 pharmaceutical products registered in Kenya, which is one of the highest totals in Africa, according to the Daily Nation. Kenyan pharmacists point…

Third Theft of Pharmaceuticals at New Jersey Pharmacy Prompts Reward Offer

September 27, 2010

Rewards have been offered in connection to three pharmaceutical thefts at the same New Jersey pharmacy. Police believe that the three thefts of pharmaceuticals at the CVS on White Horse Pike in Oaklyn, New Jersey, were all perpetrated by the same suspect, according to the Retrospect newspaper. The pharmaceutical thefts occurred on July 2, July…

Police Look for Man Responsible for Arkansas Pharmaceutical Theft

September 27, 2010

Photographer’s Project Documents Fake Drug Smuggling at JFK Airport

September 24, 2010

A photographer’s project documenting what type of illicit goods come into the U.S. through New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport revealed smuggled counterfeit products including fake drugs. Taryn Simon spent five days and five nights in 2009 at one of JFK’s busiest terminals, reports CNN. There she not only encountered many knock-off handbags and…

Vietnamese Student Invents Anti-Counterfeiting Technology

September 24, 2010

A Vietnamese student recently invented a software program designed to identify phony products, including counterfeit drugs. Nguyen Kim Hoang Nhu is a student at Ho Chi Minh City National University where one of her goals is to create a program to help people avoid coming in contact with fake products, according to Viet Nam News.…

Mansion of Man Who Ran Illegal Online Pharmacies Up for Auction

September 23, 2010

The Texas mansion of a man convicted of running a number of illegal online pharmacies is currently up for auction. The bidding for the 22,000 square-foot mansion that used to be owned by Rakesh Saran will start at $1.5 million, according to the Dallas Morning News. The four-story house was seized in 2005 following the…

Alleged Wisconsin Drug Counterfeiter Previously Faced Drug Charges

September 23, 2010

The alleged co-conspirator to a prominent Wisconsin pharmacist accused of selling counterfeit drugs had previously been arrested and charged for running a sham pharmacy in Texas.   Balbir Bhogal was recently arrested, along with renowned Madison, Wisonsin, pharmacist Marla Ahlgrimm, for allegedly importing and selling millions of tablets of phony erectile dysfunction medication and other…

Google Takes Rogue Pharmacies to Court

September 22, 2010

Today Google filed a civil lawsuit against a number of illegal online pharmacies, claiming that the businesses violated the search engine's advertisement policy. Michael Zwibelman, Google's Litigation Counsel, wrote in a post on the company's blog that it has been battling these illegal online pharmacies for years in an effort to keep advertisements promoting illegal…

Uganda Sets Up Police Desks to Fight Counterfeit Drugs

September 22, 2010

Police officials in the landlocked African Nation of Uganda are setting up anti-narcotics desks at all of the police stations around the country in an effort to fight the problem of counterfeit drugs. Inspector general of Police Kale Kayihura told the New Vision that the desks are being set up to combat the rising number…

Two Nigerians Accused of Pharmaceutical Theft

September 22, 2010

Two Nigerians have been charged with the theft of pharmaceuticals valued at $18.5 million Nigerian from a pharmacy in Lagos. Uchenna Ogodo worked as a pharmacy attendant for ICEE Pharmaceutical Limited, according to Next, an African news source. Prosecutor Innocent Effiong alleged before the Ebute Meta Magistrate’s Court that he and his accomplice, 35-year-old Patrick…

Two Maryland Men Charged in Pharmaceutical Theft

September 22, 2010

A Maryland man and his getaway driver were arrested just 10 hours after they allegedly committed a pharmaceutical theft. John Collins Jr., 19, allegedly committed a robbery with a loaded gun at the Darlington Pharmacy in Darlington, Maryland, according to Maryland State Police, reports The Aegis. Collins, of Port Deposit, Maryland, reportedly took more than…

NAFDAC Chief Survives Gun Attack

September 22, 2010

Dr. Paul Orhii, the Director General of Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), recently survived an attack on his life.

Unknown gunmen attempted to kill Orhii, whose agency fights the problem of counterfeit drugs in Nigeria, as he was returning from his village in northern Benue state to the capital city of Abuja, NAFDAC spokesman Abubakar Jimoh told Afrique en Ligne.

Pharmacies Cope with Growing Trend of Pharmaceutical Theft

September 21, 2010

Victor Baca, owner of Village Pharmacy in Portales, New Mexico, is aware of the rising risk businesses like his face from criminals who steal drugs to resell them, and that is why he and his staff are preparing for the worst. “We’ve had training for our employees as to what to do in case of…

U.S. Attorney General Touches on Illegal Online Pharmacies in Speech

September 20, 2010

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder recently spoke about the dangers posed by illegal online pharmacies at an opiate abuse conference in Montpelier, Vermont. Holder spoke of the importance of supporting law enforcement agencies, giving them the tools they require to stop not only drug abuse, but illegal online pharmacies as well. Holder described the deployment…

Pharmacist Facing Disciplinary Action on Top of Fake Drug Charges

September 20, 2010

The Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing is currently investigating whether it should impose disciplinary action against a pharmacist accused of importing counterfeit drugs on top of the federal penalties she may face. Marla Ahlgrimm was recently booked on federal charges of conspiracy to import counterfeit drugs and is currently free on bail, according to…

£1 Million of Fake Drugs Seized at Heathrow over the Summer

September 20, 2010

Over the last three months nearly £4 million in fake goods were confiscated at London’s Heathrow Airport, including £1 million worth of fake erectile dysfunction drugs. According to the BBC, those figures indicate that the amount of fake goods seized by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) has more than doubled since last year. Last year…

Nigerian Manufacturers Call for Stiffer Penalties on Fake Drugs

September 17, 2010

The Manufacturer’s Association of Nigeria (MAN) is calling on the country’s National Assembly to enact stiffer penalties against people who smuggle in hazardous materials, including fake drugs, into Nigeria. Speaking at MAN’s stakeholder’s forum on fake, counterfeit, smuggling and other illicit trades in Abuja, the organization’s president Chief Kola Jamodu said that in addition to…

UK Man Gets Nine Months for Sales of Fake Drugs

September 17, 2010

A 61-year-old man from Birmingham, England, was recently sentenced to serve nine months in prison for selling unlicensed erectile dysfunction medication. Last year an investigation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) found that John Henry Atkinson was illegally selling potentially fake drugs. Atkinson was found to be in possession of two boxes…

Nigeria to Utilize RFID Tag To Fight Fake Drugs

September 16, 2010

Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has approved the use of the anti-counterfeiting technology radio frequency identification (RFID) tags in the fight against fake drugs. NAFDAC has plans to require all the pharmacies in the country to adopt the method once a sufficient portion of drugs are tagged, according to…

Russia Adopts New Rules for Destruction of Counterfeit Drugs

September 16, 2010

Russia recently adopted new guidelines for the destruction of counterfeit drugs as well as for medications that are substandard. The new law, which was passed on September 3, will require that the destruction of all fake drugs be handled by organizations that are licensed for the collection, transportation and disposal of grade I-IV waste, according…

India to Require Barcodes on Pharmaceutical Exports

September 15, 2010

India’s Commerce Ministry is planning to require all pharmaceutical exports to utilize barcode technology, according to PharmaBiz.com. The news source reports that the Commerce Secretary met with Pharmexcil, India’s pharmaceutical exports promotion council, and accepted its recommendation to employ the technology. Pharmexcil proposed three ideas at the meeting: barcoding, digital mass serialization (DMS)/unique number and…

Dan Rather Reports on NAFDAC

September 15, 2010

  September 14,2010 – Dan Rather reports on the Nigerian Drug Enforcement Agency, NAFDAC, and it’s attempts to protect Nigerian consumers from fake drugs in In The Mysterious Case Kevin Xu. The broadcast was shown September 14, at 8pm ET on HDNet. Dan Rather spoke to Paul Orhii, Director General of The National Agency for…

Counterfeit Drug Infiltration of the Legitimate Supply Chain: Dan Rather Reports on HDNet

September 15, 2010

September 14, 2010 – In The Mysterious Case Kevin Xu Dan Rather investigates the fake prescription medication market and attempts of counterfeiters to infiltrate the US market. The broadcast was shown September 14, at 8pm ET on HDNet. Dan Rather spoke to Andre Watson, US special agent in charge of immigration and customs enforcement about…

Tech Companies Team Up to Offer RFID Anti-Counterfeiting Technology

September 15, 2010

Two technology companies have teamed up to produce an anti-counterfeiting technology that could help with the identification of fake drugs. One company produces a relatively inexpensive radio tag and the other makes an affordable reader, according to VentureBeat.com. The technology employed in these devices is radio frequency identification (RFID). The tag transmits a radio wave…

Drug Theft Murder Suspect Fled – $11,000 Reward Offered

September 14, 2010

An $11,000 reward has been offered to help find the second suspect in a robbery and shooting that took place at a California pharmacy. Recently two men entered a Rexall pharmacy in North Highlands, California, and demanded the painkiller OxyContin at gunpoint, according to the Sacramento Bee. During the ensuing shootout between a pharmacy employee…

Theft of Pharmaceuticals on the Rise

September 14, 2010

Law enforcement officers and pharmaceutical industry officials say that the theft of pharmaceuticals is on the rise across the United States, reports the Fresno Bee. The news source reports that while there are no official numbers of nationwide pharmaceutical thefts because of variety of reasons, federal drug authorities, pharmaceutical companies, pharmacies, state officials and local…

Theft of Pharmaceuticals A Major Problem in Africa

September 13, 2010

The theft of pharmaceuticals is leading to the creation of a black market for anti-malaria drugs in Africa, according to Willis Akhwale of the Kenyan Ministry of Health. Akhwale originally told the Wall Street Journal about the problem in 2005, but he says the problem remains five years later. Often times, government stores of badly-needed…

NAFDAC Director Heads Regional Fake Drug Task Force

September 13, 2010

A director with Nigeria's National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) was made the head of a regional task force to fight fake drugs. Hashim Yusufu was appointed to the position by the 63rd meeting of the World Health Assembly, according to AllAfrica.com. Yusufu said that Nigeria was leading Africa's fight against…

Zanzibar Operation Nets Counterfeit Drugs

September 10, 2010

The Zanzibar Food, Drugs and Cosmetics Board and Interpol’s Tanzania branch recently impounded a quantity of counterfeit drugs following an operation named Mamba 111. It was the first operation since the board was created and resulted in hundreds of cartons of counterfeit drugs being impounded, according to The Tanzanian Citizen. The counterfeit drugs were confiscated…

Trial Date Set for Canadian Paralympic Champion Accused of Counterfeit Drug Sales

September 9, 2010

  A new trial date has been set for the Paralympic curling champion and retired Richmond dentist charged with trafficking counterfeit erectile dysfunction drugs. Jim Armstrong, 59 year old retired dentist and champion curler, is charged with trafficking fake erectile dysfunction medications with his 28-year-old son, a dentist from Richmond, British Columbia, according to the…

Nigeria to Discuss Cholera Epidemic, Counterfeit Drugs with Neighbors

September 9, 2010

Officials from Nigeria and several of its neighboring countries will meet in Abuja, Nigeria, to discuss the recent cholera epidemic as well as counterfeit drugs. The meetings, to be held on October 17 and 18, will focus on the epidemic that has already claimed the lives of 350 people in Nigeria, according to 234Next.com. A…

Anti-Counterfeiting Technology Uses Radio Waves to Find Fake Drugs

September 8, 2010

  Lund University Researchers from Sweden and the U.K. recently developed an anti-counterfeiting technology that they hope can combat the problem of fake drugs, particularly in Africa, according to AlphaGalileo.org The researchers have created a prototype of the device. It resembles a small suitcase and users place the medication in its packaging in the device,…

Two Sentenced To Prison for Illegal Online Pharmacy

September 7, 2010

Two men were recently sentenced to prison for their involvement in an illegal online pharmacy. Daniel L. Dailey’s company, PowerMedica, illegally sold steroids and human growth hormone to thousands of customers over the internet. Dailey, who admitted that the company didn’t require prescriptions or customers to be seen by doctors, was sentenced to 46 months…

Unapproved Cancer Drug Sold Online Found to be Starch and Sugar

September 2, 2010

Distributor Sentenced to Prison A Canadian man was sentenced to 33 months in prison by an Arizona judge after pleading guilty to distributing counterfeit drugs earlier this year.   Hazim Gaber had pleaded guilty to five counts of wire fraud in connection to selling a white powder he claimed was the experimental cancer drug dichloroacetate…

DEA Heads First-Ever Nationwide Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

September 2, 2010

The Drug Enforcement Administration and government, community, public health and law enforcement partners announced a nationwide prescription drug “Take-Back” initiative that seeks to prevent increased pill abuse and theft. DEA will be collecting potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs for destruction at sites nationwide on Saturday, September 25 th from 10 a.m. to…

Tech Company Introduces Anti-Counterfeiting Technology

September 1, 2010

  An English technology company is working on a new, low-cost anti-counterfeiting technology to help combat the problem of fake medications.   The company producing this new anti-counterfeiting technology will place a code on drug packaging that it hopes will be almost impossible to duplicate, according to Cambridge Business News. The new technology will place…

German Pharmacy Board: Country’s Drug Supply Chain is Safe

August 30, 2010

Germany’s pharmacy association recently affirmed its belief in the security of the country’s pharmaceutical supply chain. The ABDA said that Germans should be confident when taking their medication despite some reports of counterfeit drugs in the country, according to SecuringPharma.com. “The safest way to get drugs in Germany is any one of the 21,500 community…

Chinese Police Nab Safe Crackers Who Stole from Pharmaceutical Company

August 27, 2010

Chinese police say they have apprehended a gang of safe crackers that is believed to be responsible for a recent theft at a pharmaceutical company. It is believed that the five suspects were responsible for breaking into a safe at a pharmaceutical enterprise in southern Beijing’s Economic-Technological Development Area (ETDA) on August 5, according to…