Four Welsh drug counterfeiters are sentenced
The UK’s governmental drug body, The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), have confirmed that four people based in Wales (three men and one woman) have been handed prison sentences after illegally supplying prescription-only and counterfeit medicine over the internet. Andrew Luxton was sentenced to 12 months in prison on five counts involving conspiracy to sell or supply prescription-only medicines, possession of counterfeit medicines in breach of trademarks, possession of a Class A controlled drug (Methadone) and supplying a Class C controlled drug (Diazepam). Samantha Steed also received 12 months in prison suspended for 18 months, on four counts involving conspiracy to supply prescription-only medicines, possession of counterfeit medicines in breach of trademarks and supplying a Class C controlled drug (Diazepam). Ms Steed was also handed a community service order of 18 months. Carl Willis was sentenced to 6 months in prison suspended for 18 months, on three counts involving conspiracy to supply prescription-only medicines and possession of a Class C controlled drug (Diazepam). In addition, Mr Willis must also attend a drug rehabilitation programme. Anthony Luxton was sentenced to a Supervision Order on three counts which involved conspiracy to supply prescription-only medicines and possession of two Class C controlled drugs (Diazepam and Nitrazepam). The arrests were carried out following an undercover operation focused on the Ebbw Vale area of Gwent, whereby an MHRA undercover agent obtained medicines online - from a third party based in Pakistan. The guilty foursome were importing the prescription-online medicines from Pakistan and then re-selling them to UK consumers in smaller quantities. Investigators found large amounts of counterfeit medication and generic prescription-only medicine following searches conducted at the homes of those involved, including: Viagra, Cialis, Diazepam and Methadone. A computer at one of the addresses also unearthed damning evidence in the form of email exchanges between Andrew Luxton, Samantha Steed, Carl Willis and other individuals which showed a history of illegal drug activity. The four defendants acted as ‘drop shippers’; a term Medical Specialists explained back in January when we reported about Pfizer’s fight against counterfeit drugs. Although they were receiving large bulks of prescription-only medicine from Pakistan, they aimed to reduce the number of importations to minimise the chance of packages being intercepted upon entering the UK. Nimo Ahmed, MHRA Acting Head of Enforcement said : “The MHRA is committed to pursuing those involved in the illicit supply of medicines and taking action to ensure the public is protected. These individuals were involved in a concerted conspiracy to supply counterfeit medicine and showed a blatant disregard for public health. Buying medicines from unauthorised sources significantly increases the risks of getting substandard or fake medicines. People who buy medicines without the benefit of a consultation with an appropriate healthcare professional run the risk being supplied with medicines that are not safe or suitable for them to use. You should take prescription-only medicines after an appropriate consultation with your GP.” However, you can also undergo an online consultation with one of Medical Specialists’ GMC-registered Doctors and we supply prescription-only medicines to treat a wide range of conditions such as: male impotence, male hair loss, female hair loss, acne, obesity, high cholesterol and many more. Once approved by the Doctor, they will then write you a prescription which is passed to our in-house Pharmacy team and subsequently dispensed and dispatched to you within a mere 24 hours! (Allow extra time for overseas deliveries).