As part of the global campaign to abolish counterfeit medicines, The Peterson Group, a non-profit organization on its movement against counterfeiting, has tied up with authorities and officials to confiscate six million tablets and medical devices used to manufacture of fraudulent drugs across Great Britain. These medicines and tools are amounting to $1.5 billion.
Among the confiscated drugs are slimming pills which, as the workers admit to, are very popular among young women even if it is only being sold along the streets. Now that this information has been out on public, a warning from Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) was released stating, “Gangs are moving away from cocaine and heroin to focus on health products”.
Britain, along with other developed countries is surprisingly being flooded with dangerous fake slimming pills, cancer medication and other potentially fatal drugs as criminal gangs move into the pharmaceutical market.
Fake and unlicensed medicines worth nearly £16million have been seized in the last week alone in a record haul by drugs inspectors.
One expert claimed the trade in counterfeit medication had become the most profitable of all crimes. Reviews are also admitting that counterfeiting is considered to be one of the most lucrative industries which does not only happen in developing countries but is also rampant in developed nations. In the United States alone, fraudsters earn an estimated $1 Billion profit every year.
While these operations continue to flourish, the authorities are making painful but successful confiscations every now and then. Now that it has reached a global scale and even dominating online pharmaceutical sites, health officials and NGOs are being more aggressive.
Within this year, INTERPOL has discovered £51.6 million worth of counterfeit medicines in 115 countries in its global search. The Peterson Group has participated in the raid in Jakarta, Indonesia, where a secluded building in Kota was raided with reports of illegal manufacturing. A total of $500,000 of drugs including Cialis and Viagra were also confiscated.
Dubbed as Operation Pangaea because of its global scale, Interpol has taken down illegal operations being transacted in a residential address led by an individual with a foreign identity, stalls setting their businesses in an open street, internet sites which have products ranging from athletes foot to cancer medicines. Large internet sites such as YouTube, Facebook and Google are already on their feet in an effort to provide assistance.