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Drug Company Pays 3/4 of a Billion Dollars for Selling Adulterated Drugs

November 10, 2010 | 44,447 views

anti-depressant pillsDrug company GlaxoSmithKline is paying $750 million to settle allegations that it knowingly manufactured and sold adulterated drugs.

Glaxo will pay $150 million in criminal fines and $600 million in civil penalties.

Several of the company's drugs were adulterated at one of the company's plants between 2001 and 2005, including the antidepressant Paxil, the skin-infection ointment Bactroban and the anti-nausea drug Kytril.

According to the Los Angeles Times:

"... [Q]uality problems at the plant ... included failing to ensure that Bactroban and Kytril were free of contamination from microorganisms and causing Paxil controlled-release tablets to split, causing the potential distribution of tablets that did not have any therapeutic effect."

 

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Well, put another checkmark next to GlaxoSmithKline on the ever expanding rap sheet of drug industry criminal misdoings.

Would it surprise you to know that 19 of AllBusiness.com's Top 100 Corporate Criminals List for the 1990s were drug companies?

It doesn't surprise me at all.

Drug Industry – Top Criminals

Crimes committed by some of the most well-known drug companies include:

One case even involved obstruction of justice and eight counts of persuading employees to destroy documents in a federal investigation.

And yet the crimes uncovered are just the tip of the iceberg. God only knows how many illegal and potentially harmful activities go on for each case that actually ends up seeing the light of day.

Even more frightening, these criminal cases are related to drugs, but many of these companies, including GSK, also produce VACCINES.

And guess what?

They're typically not liable for damages from, or harm done by, contaminated or otherwise dangerous vaccines!

In my mind, it's absolute folly to imagine that these companies would fail so miserably in the quality control and safety area of their drug operations, while maintaining their vaccine manufacturing above reproach.

I believe the only difference between their drugs and their vaccines is the fact that the vaccine industry is far more protected and effectively shielded from scrutiny... And although some problems with vaccines do make headlines now and then, vaccine makers are rarely if ever punished for these willful errors and omissions.

For example, last year, Baxter was suspected of releasing vaccines contaminated with a pandemic flu virus, and earlier this year the FDA suspended the use of GSK's rotavirus vaccine after a research team unrelated to GSK discovered it was contaminated with material from a pig virus.

Going further back in time, polio vaccines were found to contain a monkey virus back in 2001.

There were no criminal charges issued or fines collected in any of these cases that I know of.

So, do "mistakes" happen just as frequently in vaccine production as they do in drug manufacturing?

I bet they do.

GSK Knowingly Manufactured and Sold Contaminated Drugs

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, this latest case was brought to light by a whistleblower who worked in GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) North Carolina office, who was fired in 2003 after repeatedly reporting there were problems that could affect patient safety.

GSK will now settle the allegations against them by coughing up $150 million in criminal fines and another $600 million in civil penalties.

The charge?

Knowingly manufacturing and selling adulterated drugs from their plant in Cidra, Puerto Rico, between 2001 and 2005.

The affected drugs included:

  • Paxil CR – a commonly prescribed antidepressant
  • Bactroban – a skin infection ointment
  • Kytril – an anti-nausea drug

According to the Los Angeles Times:

"... [Q]uality problems at the plant ... included failing to ensure that Bactroban and Kytril were free of contamination from microorganisms, and causing Paxil controlled-release tablets to split, causing the potential distribution of tablets that did not have any therapeutic effect."

In response, GSK issued a statement saying it "regretted operating the plant in a manner that violated good manufacturing practices."

Gee, are we supposed to be comforted by the idea that they're capable of "regret"? 

Just exactly where was that conscience during the four years they knowingly manufactured and sold these tainted drugs; before their willfully negligent manufacturing practices were outed by a whistleblower?

GlaxoSmithKline's Death Toll Keeps Rising

To date, GSK has been ordered to pay out well over  $5 billion in fines and judgments for various violations and crimes related to their drugs. But although that might sound like a lot, ask any bereaved family member if they care about the money.

In addition to the tainted drugs mentioned above, GSK also produces the HPV vaccine Cervarix, which -- just like Gardasil -- has caused adverse reactions and alleged deaths around the world.

GSK's most recent "mistake" is related to its cover-up of the dangers inherent with the popular diabetes drug Avandia. So far it's clear that GSK spent 11 years trying to cover up trial data that showed Avandia was a risky drug for your heart.

Avandia also topped the list of drugs linked to fatal adverse events in 2009, according to an analysis of U.S. Food and Drug Administration records. With a staggering 1,354 deaths reported to the FDA in 2009 alone, it's hard to believe that the US still allows this drug to stay on the market!

Back in 2000, GSK's drug Lotronex was taken off the market for safety reasons, less than 10 months after it was approved, because it was linked to severe intestinal problems and several deaths. (It was later allowed back on the market after patients complained about its removal, despite its serious health risks...)

GSK has also paid hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements for fraud cases and pricing disputes, as well as judgments won by the federal government in Medicare and Medicaid fraud suits.

Why should anyone trust these drug companies with their health?

Do you?

People are Waking Up to the Truth about Health

Fortunately, more people are waking up to the illusion and deception of the drug industry as a whole, and starting to clearly see the truth. However, physicians must also, en masse, come to the realization that maintaining the current drugs-first approach is going nowhere.

The evidence tells us that these drugs (and vaccines) are the creations of some of the top criminal corporations in the world!

It is quite obvious that the drug industry is a racket – a deadly, but profitable scheme. It has nothing to do with creating better health.

Please, don't risk your money or your life on a paradigm designed to profit from your illness.

Instead, take control of your own health by adopting natural lifestyle strategies that will promote your body's natural healing abilities without the need for potentially dangerous drugs.


[+] Sources and References

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