Phony Viagra, Cialis Pills Seized by French Customs Officials

Men using <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/topics/overview/viagra">Viagra,  Cialis and other impotence drugs should be sure to get these from a trusted source.  That’s because the market – especially the internet, is awash in phony impotence drugs.

In a market worth over $3 million and for the millions of men suffering from erectile dysfunction, the boom of fake Erectile Dysfunction (ED) medications is cause for concern.  Another cache of fake medications was recently seized when French customs officials intercepted a shipment of 224,000 counterfeit Viagra and Cialis pills worth 2.4 million euros—$3.5 million—the Budget Ministry said Monday.  Copies of the drugs were found on December 18th during a search at the French capital’s main air hub at Roissy, in a freight cargo on its way to Brazil from India.  “Branded Powergra and Erectalis, each box contained, in fact, four tablets in the characteristic shape and color of Viagra or Cialis pills,” Budget Minister Eric Werth’s office, which in charge of customs, said.  “The companies Pfizer and Eli Lilly, which respectively own the Viagra and Cialis brands, quickly confirmed the counterfeit nature of these products and the 224,000 pills were seized,” Werth’s office added.

Last July, Chinese police seized over a ton of phony drugs including at least 18,000 fake Viagra tablets.  Over 30 people were detained on suspicion of either making or selling the drugs.  Police in the eastern province of Zhejiang raided the gang making counterfeit Viagra and selling the tablets to 12 countries, including the United States and Holland.  In Guangdong, police arrested 12 people and seized one ton of fake drugs, two production lines, and large quantities of raw materials for making “sildenafil citrate,” the scientific name for Viagra.

Late last year, Ashish Halai and his group bought counterfeit drugs from Chinese suppliers and sold them to customers who thought they were buying Viagra and Propecia.  Their network stretched from Britain to Hong Kong, Dubai, the Bahamas, and the US—to name a few—in Britain’s largest drug counterfeiting case.  The fake pills were produced in secret factories in China and Pakistan and smuggled to the US and Europe.  Halai and his wife, a pharmacist, ran a legitimate pharmacy for years.  When the business was sold, he continued to use the name to sell herbal weight-loss aids. 

In 2002 he started to deal in counterfeit Viagra, selling via email.  He made a deal to supply a Mexican company based in the Bahamas and developed a network of contacts to help him smuggle into Great Britain and ship to the Bahamas.  Packages, many of which were shipped with companies such as DHL, were marked as containing vitamin supplements for dogs to avoid detection.  The case dates back to 2003 and 2004, when counterfeit batches of the impotence drugs were seized while being smuggled into Heathrow and Stansted airports.  Samples revealed the medicines contained about 90 per cent of the active pharmaceutical ingredients found in genuine tablets. 

Most of the fake pills were sold via the Internet; some were sold as prescription medicines.  In 2003, the US Food and Drug Administration seized 8,000 packages of Viagra in Miami.  In July 2003, Britain’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency officers seized over 120,000 fake Viagra tablets.

This entry was posted in Legal News, Pharmaceuticals. Bookmark the permalink.


© 2005-2016 Parker Waichman LLP ®. All Rights Reserved.