"It is scary how many similarities there are between this industry and the mob. The mob makes obscene amounts of money, as does this industry. The side effects of organized crime are killings and deaths, and the side effects are the same in this industry. The mob bribes politicians and others, and so does the drug industry." -- Peter Rost, former Pfizer Vice President of Marketing (source)
Overcoming the belief that the healthcare industry is largely free of corruption and criminality can be a formidable hurdle for anyone to navigate. Even if one accepts the overwhelming evidence, it is yet another leap to actually factor-in this knowledge when considering information provided by healthcare professionals. Many people simply will not question the information and advice provided by their doctor, especially when it is a desperate patient facing a life threatening issue. To be sure, healthcare professionals are not always wrong and it is not necessarily they that are to blame for disseminating inaccurate information, but rather it is the healthcare complex as a whole in which the fault lies. I use the term 'healthcare' because it's recognizable, but the more accurate term is 'disease management' because the truth is, this industry isn't interested in curing disease. Which is more profitable; to cure, or to treat indefinitely?
There is more to it than simple greed however; there is also the public mindset that the available science, which is often biased by the same for-profit corporations, is unbiased, well tested and well established. There is also the mindset of the healthcare professional who has paid an enormous amount of money for their education and who thusly seems largely incapable of considering any information from non-mainstream sources which challenge that which they have been taught, regardless of the validity of the conflicting information.
Here we shall primarily concern ourselves only with blatant criminality beyond the level of caregiver, focusing instead upon the corporations and institutions that dictate policy, procedure, and manufacture drugs. Following is a small sampling of some of that criminality. It should be noted that the billions of dollars paid in settlements and fines by pharmaceutical companies seem to be viewed as simply the cost of doing business and rarely are the responsible individuals held accountable for their actions.
Abbott Labs to Pay $1.5 Billion to Resolve Criminal & Civil Investigations of Off-label Promotion of Depakote | Department of Justice, 2012
In an agreed statement of facts filed in the criminal action, Abbott admits that from 1998 through 2006, the company maintained a specialized sales force trained to market Depakote in nursing homes for the control of agitation and aggression in elderly dementia patients, despite the absence of credible scientific evidence that Depakote was safe and effective for that use. In addition, from 2001 through 2006, the company marketed Depakote in combination with atypical antipsychotic drugs to treat schizophrenia, even after its clinical trials failed to demonstrate that adding Depakote was any more effective than an atypical antipsychotic alone for that use.
CDC Caught Hiding Data Showing Mercury in Vaccines Linked to Autism | Brian Shilhavy, Health Impact News 2019
In a press release issued last year, one that almost no mainstream media sources have bothered to report, it was announced that Dr. Brian Hooker had finally received documents from the CDC through a Freedom of Information Act that revealed the CDC had access to data linking Thimerosal in vaccines to autism, non-organic sleep disorders, and speech disorders.
Two members of Congress helped Dr. Hooker draft his letter to the CDC, after having spent nearly 10 years submitting over 100 Freedom of Information Acts to no avail.
This information was completely blacked out of the mainstream media. This information is very damaging to the CDC, which has stated for years that there are no studies linking the mercury of Thimerosal in vaccines to autism. [...] Thimerosal is still used today in the flu shot that is administered to pregnant women and infants.
CDC researcher Poul Thorsen, who famously headed up the "Denmark Study" that many claim disproved any link between autism and vaccines, has been indicted in Atlanta by a federal grand jury on charges of wire fraud, money laundering and defrauding research institutions of grant money.
Aegerion Pharmaceuticals Inc., a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based subsidiary of Novelion Therapeutics Inc., has agreed to plead guilty to charges relating to its prescription drug, Juxtapid, the Justice Department announced today.
As charged in a criminal information filed today, Aegerion introduced Juxtapid into interstate commerce that was misbranded because, among other things, Aegerion failed to comply with a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS). The resolution also includes a deferred prosecution agreement relating to criminal liability under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). In addition, Aegerion has agreed to settle allegations that it caused false claims to be submitted to federal health care programs for Juxtapid. Aegerion has agreed to pay more than $35 million to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from these matters.
Eli Lilly and Company Agrees to Pay $1.415 Billion to Resolve Allegations of Off-label Promotion of Zyprexa | Department of Justice, 2009
Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division Gregory G. Katsas and acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania Laurie Magid today announced the filing of a criminal information against Eli Lilly for promoting Zyprexa for uses not approved by the FDA. Eli Lilly, headquartered in Indianapolis, is charged in the information with promoting Zyprexa for such off-label or unapproved uses as treatment for dementia, including Alzheimer's dementia, in elderly people.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Chairman of Children’s Health Defense (CHD) and Rolf Hazlehurst, the father of a vaccine-injured child have petitioned Michael Horowitz, the Inspector General of the Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate the conduct of two DOJ attorneys, Vincent Matanoski and Lynn Ricciardella.
The two attorneys represented the Secretary of Health and Human Services in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP), otherwise known as the “Vaccine Court,” in the Omnibus Autism Proceedings (OAP). The alleged actions of the two attorneys in the OAP were fraudulent and obstructed justice.
Kennedy and Hazlehurst allege that Matanoski and Ricciardella acted together to intentionally misrepresent the opinion of one of their own witnesses, Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, to conceal evidence of his true opinion from the Special Masters who presided in the “Vaccine Court” and the petitioners who were seeking justice and compensation.
The evidence that Matanoski and Ricciardella concealed was a report authored by Dr. Zimmerman showing how vaccines may cause autism in a subset of children with underlying mitochondrial issues.
GlaxoSmithKline settles healthcare fraud case for $3 billion | David Ingram, Reuters, 2012
In the largest settlement involving a pharmaceutical company, the British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline agreed to plead guilty to criminal charges and pay $3 billion in fines for promoting its best-selling antidepressants for unapproved uses and failing to report safety data about a top diabetes drug, federal prosecutors announced Monday. The agreement also includes civil penalties for improper marketing of a half-dozen other drugs.
The criminal information filed today alleges that SB Pharmco's manufacturing operations failed to ensure that Kytril and Bactroban finished products were free of contamination from microorganisms. The criminal information further alleges that SB Pharmco's manufacturing process caused Paxil CR two-layer tablets to split. The splitting, which the company itself called a "critical defect," caused the potential distribution of tablets that did not have any therapeutic effect and tablets that did not contain any controlled release mechanism.
The criminal information also alleges that Avandamet tablets manufactured by SB Pharmco did not always have the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved mix of active ingredients, and, as a result, potentially contained too much or too little of the ingredient with the therapeutic effect. Finally, the criminal information alleges that SB Pharmco's Cidra facility suffered from longstanding problems of product mix-ups, which caused tablets of one drug type and strength to be commingled with tablets of another drug type and/or strength in the same bottle.
High Times at the CDC: Sex, Lies and Audiotape | Brian Hooker, AutismOne Media
How Big Pharma Rakes In Profits From Deadly Drugs | Ben Swann, Truth in Media, 2016
J&J Loses Again, Pays $8B Over Antipsychotic Drug Harm | The Highwire, 2019
Breaking news out of Philadelphia as Reuters is reporting that Johnson & Johnson must pay $8 billion in punitive damages to a man who previously won $680,000 over his claims that it failed to warn that young men using its antipsychotic drug Risperdal could grow breasts. The case is one of thousands in Philadelphia alone with more than 13,000 across the country making the drug yet another product Johnson & Johnson must defend against legal challenges in courts across America.
Johnson & Johnson’s public relations department was already in shambles from its legal loss in Oklahoma in which it was ordered to pay $572M in the landmark legal case for causing the opioid crisis in that state.
Johnson & Johnson Coughs Up $2.2 Billion in Drug-Marketing Settlement | Kyle Stock, Bloomberg, 2013
The deal represents the government's third-largest settlement with a pharmaceutical company, yet the deception may still have been worth it for J&J: It sold $24.2 billion of Risperdal from 2003 to 2010.
Johnson & Johnson settles with Ohio counties for $20 million prior to opioid trial | Doha Madani, NBC News, 2019
Johnson & Johnson and its pharmaceutical subsidiary, Janssen, agreed to a $20.4 million settlement with two Ohio counties Tuesday in an effort to avoid a lengthy and costly federal trial about the opioid addiction epidemic.
The opioid manufacturer company said the settlements with Cuyahoga and Summit counties include no admission of liability and removes the Johnson & Johnson from the federal trial scheduled to begin this month in the Northern District of Ohio, according to a news release.
Merck Accused of Fraud, Deceit and Negligence in US Gardasil Case | Christina England, BA Hons, GreenMedInfo, 2018
There has been documented evidence that the HPV vaccine has caused more injuries than any other vaccination in history. Despite this evidence however, the HPV vaccination has continued to be hailed a success by the pharmaceutical industry and governments alike.
According to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) VigiAccess database, as of April 09, 2018, a total of 85,329 reports of adverse reactions have been filed regarding the HPV vaccination. These reports include 37,699 reports of nervous system disorders; 2450 cardiac disorders, (including 38 cardiac arrests) 533 reports of Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS); over 3200 reports of seizures or epilepsy, 8453 syncope and 389 deaths.
Merck Fighting Fraud Lawsuits in U.S. Courts on MMR and Gardasil Vaccines | Brian Shilhavy, Health Impact News, 2019
There are currently two major federal lawsuits against Merck that are being litigated in U.S. courts: a whistleblower lawsuit from former Merck scientists claiming fraud regarding the MMR vaccine, and a lawsuit against the Gardasil vaccine claiming fraud from a 16-year-old girl who allegedly suffered Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) after receiving the Gardasil vaccine.
In a lawsuit against Merck that was originally filed in 2010, and continues to this day, Stephen Krahling and Joan Wlochowski, former Merck virologists, claim that they “witnessed firsthand the improper testing and data falsification in which Merck engaged to artificially inflate the (MMR) vaccine’s efficacy findings.”
The former Merck scientists claim that Merck’s faulty MMR vaccine has caused the United States to pay “hundreds of millions of dollars for a vaccine that does not provide adequate immunization.”
“As the largest single purchaser of childhood vaccines (accounting for more than 50 percent of all vaccine purchases), the United States is by far the largest financial victim of Merck’s fraud,” according to the 2010 False Claims Act complaint.
“But the ultimate victims here are the millions of children who every year are being injected with a mumps vaccine that is not providing them with an adequate level of protection.
And while this is a disease that, according to the Centers for Disease Control (‘CDC’), was supposed to be eradicated by now, the failure in Merck’s vaccine has allowed this disease to linger, with significant outbreaks continuing to occur.”
Merck has tried, unsuccessfully, to end this case for almost eight years now, in an attempt to hide it from the American public.
Merck to Pay More than $650 Million to Resolve Claims of Fraudulent Price Reporting and Kickbacks | Department of Justice, 2008
WASHINGTON -- Merck & Company has agreed to pay more than $650 million to resolve allegations that the pharmaceutical manufacturer failed to pay proper rebates to Medicaid and other government health care programs and paid illegal remuneration to health care providers to induce them to prescribe the company's products, the Justice Department announced today. The allegations were brought in two separate lawsuits filed by whistleblowers under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provisions of the False Claims Act.
Poul Thorsen is a key figure in the shaky research that denied justice to thousands of families whose children suffered a vaccine related neurological injury (brain and nervous system) that developed into autism spectrum disorder (ASD or autism). Thorsen's influence on US vaccine projects and policies is extensive.
The studies he led had strong influence on the review and outcomes of the Institute of Medicine (now known as the National Academy of Medicine) of the National Academy of Sciences when looking at thimerosal in vaccines. Today, Thorsen is a fugitive from justice since a warrant for his arrest was issued in April 2001. Thorsen was added to the HHS Office of Inspector General's 'Most Wanted' list in April 2012.
Pediatric Doctor Pleads Guilty to Illegally Targeting Teens for Cholesterol Drug Trials | Brian Shilhavy, Health Impact News, 2019
According to court documents, Dr. Eduardo Montaña colluded with pharmaceutical company Aegerion to sell their drug Juxtapid to teenagers with heart problems, even though the drug was not approved for their conditions.
Dr. Montaña violated HIPAA laws of patient privacy by supplying the pharmaceutical company private medical records of 280 teenagers without patient knowledge or consent.
Drug company Aegerion was found guilty of criminal wrongdoing in a Massachusetts court, and a sales representative of the company apparently knew that what they were doing was wrong, as the sales rep allegedly wrote in an email:
"By the way, I am sending this to you from my personal email because of the patient info :)"
Pfizer to pay $2.3 billion, agrees to criminal plea | Ransdell Pierson, Jeremy Pelofsky, Ruters, 2009
The world's biggest drugmaker was slapped with the huge fines by the U.S. government after being deemed a repeat offender in pitching drugs to patients and doctors for unapproved uses.
The FDA and the Case of Ketek | New England Journal of Medicine, 2007
Three years ago, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug Ketek (telithromycin), lauding it as the first of a new class of antimicrobial agents that circumvent antibiotic resistance. Since then, Ketek has been linked to dozens of cases of severe liver injury, been the subject of a series of increasingly urgent safety warnings, and sparked two Congressional investigations of the FDA's acceptance of fraudulent safety data and inappropriate trial methods when it reviewed the drug for approval.[...]
A routine FDA inspection of the practices of the physician who enrolled the most patients — more than 400 — uncovered fraud, including complete fabrication of patient enrollment. The inspector notified FDA criminal investigators, and the physician is currently serving a 57-month sentence in federal prison for her actions. Inspections of nine other sites enrolling high numbers of patients revealed serious violations of trial conduct, raising substantial concerns about the overall integrity of the study. In the end, 4 of the 10 inspected sites were referred for criminal investigation.
Despite these discoveries, FDA managers presented study 3014 to the advisory committee in January 2003 without mentioning the issues of data integrity.
Twenty-Five Years of Pharmaceutical Industry Criminal and Civil Penalties: 1991 Through 2015 | Sammy Almashat, M.D., M.P.H., Sidney M. Wolfe, M.D., Michael Carome, M.D., 2016
In September 2012, Public Citizen published an updated analysis of all major financial settlements and court judgments1 between pharmaceutical manufacturers and the federal and state governments from 1991 through July 18, 2012. At the time of the report’s publication, over $30 billion had been paid by the pharmaceutical industry to settle allegations of numerous violations, including illegal off-label marketing and the deliberate overcharging of taxpayer-funded health programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid.
Why Are the Same People Who Failed at Science on Agent Orange in Charge of Vaccine Safety and Developmental Disorders at the CDC? | James Lyons-Weiler, Ph.D., 2018
Boyle and Destefano's Role in Agent Orange Pseudoscience
The CDC study (which lists no authors) that was published did not study any specific mechanism by which Agent Orange might have caused health issues in veterans. Instead, it studied dioxin levels in Vietnam veterans compared to non-Vietnam veterans. The 646 Vietnam veterans studied by CDC who all served in units that were most likely exposed, did not have elevated levels of dioxin as compared to non-Vietnam veterans. This retrospective study seeking differences of levels of dioxin nearly two decades after exposure is a type of epidemiologic study with only a long shot of success. The aims of the study were to determine whether military records could be "used to identify US Army Vietnam veterans who were likely to be exposed to the herbicide Agent Orange".
Dioxin is stored in fat. The study measured dioxin levels in serum.[...]
It is my professional opinion that no, neither of these individuals is sufficiently competent to be involved in vaccine safety science and interpretation of studies.
Further, it is my professional opinion that both are guilty of intentional and scientific fraud, perpetuated repeatedly and consistently, to hide the association between vaccines and neurodevelopmental disorders.
(1) Boyle informed Congress that no studies have been conducted that compares the rates of autism in vaccinated and unvaccinated Americans. Yet the CDC website clearly reads "Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism". How could any competent scientist make such as stunning conclusion when the science required to answer the question has not been conducted?
(2) Destefano removed results showing increased risk of autism from on-time MMR prior to presenting to the Institutes of Medicine, and prior to publishing the fraudulent study known as "Destefano et al., 2004". Two subgroups are missing: African American boys, and isolated autism. The latter group had increased risk, included boys and girls from any race, who had no other conditions other than autism. That means "anyone".
(3) Boyle personally attempted to reconfigure the study design of that same study in an attempt to make the association of on-time MMR and autism go away. The team played with study design after knowing the increased risk of autism had been found, which is not allowed in objective research. They worked very hard to attempt to make the association go away. They play games with birth certificates, and age-group definitions. Nothing worked. So they simply removed the results.