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King of Viagra is sentenced to 3 years imprisonment for supplying counterfeit medicines

Posted on: 15 Oct 08

Summary

Dr George Patino (aka Giorgio Giovanni Paticciano), 48 years old and a Mexican citizen by birth, was sentenced today at Kingston Crown Court to 3 years imprisonment.

Dr George Patino (aka Giorgio Giovanni Paticciano), 48 years old and a Mexican citizen by birth, was sentenced today at Kingston Crown Court to 3 years imprisonment. He is the latest in a group of businessmen engaged in a conspiracy to be prosecuted by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in an operation known as Stormgrand. This operation led to convictions in one of the biggest conspiracies of the supply of counterfeit medicines of its kind in the UK.

Over a period of nine months (February 2005 – October 2005) Dr Patino, with the help of his co-conspirator Ashish Halai, bought nearly $237,000 worth of fake Viagra which was then sold onto patients in the UK and world-wide. During that period, Dr Patino received numerous complaints from buyers, including one which stated that the product was coated with blue paint and was coming off the tablet.

Dr Patino was arrested in October 2005 at Heathrow Airport as he waited to board a plane to travel to Leeds. Upon arrest, he was carrying a laptop and memory stick which revealed files of his business dealings and over 2,000 digital photographs depicting or associated with pharmaceutical products.

Mick Deats, Group Manager of Enforcement at the MHRA said, “Counterfeit medicines can be dangerous - designed so as to deceive people and healthcare professionals whilst generating vast profits for the counterfeiters. The MHRA will not hesitate to use the full range of powers available to investigate and prosecute those who represent a risk to public health.”

 

MHRA Newsroom

Last updated on: 27/08/2010 11:40:18

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