201805.15

Slap on the Wrist for Canada Drugs after Importing $78M USD of Fake Cancer Drugs

Canadian online pharmacy, Canada Drugs, is looking at $34 million US in fines for the importation of counterfeit and unapproved cancer medicine and other illegal pharmaceuticals sold through their many online subsidiaries.
According to US prosecutors, Canada Drugs has profited at least $78 million US via illegal imports originating from Canada and the rest of the world by offering its products as a safe and more affordable alternative. Among these were counterfeit versions of widely-used cancer drugs Avastin and Altuzan.
After a plea bargain with US prosecutors, a federal judge in Montana has sentenced Canada Drugs and its CEO-founder, Kris Thorkelson: for the company, there will be a forfeiture of $29 million USD, a fine of $5 million USD, along with 5 years probation; for Thorkelson, the judge ordered a sentence of 6 months house arrest, 5 years probation, along with a $250,000 USD fine.
Furthermore, Canada Drugs will suspend operations of some of the websites it uses to sell the illegal drugs, along with the surrender of the corresponding domain names.
The advocacy group named Partnership for Safe Medicines is seeking harsher penalties for the drug store and its CEO. In a letter to the presiding judge, the group expressed that a stiffer penalty is befitting of this crime. They hope for actual jail time of Thorkelson in addition to the revocation of the license of Canada Drugs. In addition, the group wishes for all of the domain names of Canada Drugs to be surrendered as the current plea agreement does not cover an exhaustive list. The group further emphasized that the health and safety of Americans must not be taken for granted.
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