Pangea XI: 859 arrests
Interpol has once again coordinated a Pangea operation (Pangea XI) to destabilize the networks involved in counterfeit pharmaceutical and medical products. Interpol closely collaborated with institutions and companies deeply involved, willingly or not, in the fight against counterfeiting:
- the World Customs Organization (WCO);
- the Permanent Forum of International Pharmaceutical Crime (PFIPC);
- the Heads of Medicines Agencies Working Group of Enforcement Officers (WGEO);
the Pharmaceutical Security Institute (PSI);
- Facebook; and
- Payment card companies;
- Police authorities.
Police, customs and health authorities from 116 countries targeted the illicit online sale of medicines and medical products. In a few figures, the operation led to the following:
- the arrest of 859 individuals worldwide;
- the seizure of potentially dangerous pharmaceutical products for $ 14 million;
- the closure of 3,671 sites and pages on social networks and marketplaces;
- the seizure of 500 tonnes of illicit pharmaceuticals (anti-inflammatories, analgesics, erectile dysfunction pills, hypnotics, sedatives, anabolic steroids, slimming pills, or drugs to treat HIV, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes); and
- the seizure of 110,000 medical devices (syringes, contact lenses, hearing aids, surgical instruments).