China Cracks Down on Counterfeit Medicine Production

Target: Khoo Boon Hui, President of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)

Goal: Assist in the crackdown of illegal pharmaceutical operations in China.

A recent crackdown in China has resulted in the detention of almost 2,000 people directly or indirectly involved with illegal counterfeit drug operations in the country. For the operation to be successful, the Chinese government had to employ more than 18,000 officers over the past recent weeks to break up illegal counterfeit drug rings. In the end, 1100 production facilities had been destroyed and over $180 million dollars of contraband was seized.

This move comes amidst growing concern that counterfeit drugs (particularly those intended to treat cancer, hypertension, and diabetes) have grown so prevalent that they are now disrupting real supply chains and are becoming increasingly harder to differentiate from the actual medicine. What is more, just earlier this year it was discovered that hospital workers in Zhejiang Province had been collecting old packages of high-end medications in order to sell fake drugs as the same product.

Fake pharmaceuticals like these can have a severe impact on any person dependent on proper medication. Apart from the obvious fraud, many believe that these counterfeits are responsible for causing liver damage and cardiac arrest in the patients who have used them. “We’ve seen that where there’s been medicines produced that have no active ingredient whatsoever or way over the prescribed amount of active ingredients,” explained Scott Davis, senior regional director of Pfizer’s global security division.

Despite the massive strike against illegal operations, this seems to be a problem that does not easily go away. For years, the Chinese government has been targeting this activity but the problem has yet to be completely maintained.


Dear Mr. Khoo,

Millions of people around the world depend on medication to live the healthiest lives possible. For many, medication is the only option for alleviating serious health ailments. So when counterfeit pharmaceuticals find their way into supply chains, the impact can be devastating.

Recently, China heavily cracked down on counterfeit drug operations within the country. Numerous people were detained, while millions of dollars of fake drugs were seized. As they have in the past, even with this current breakthrough chances are likely that these operations will continue in the future. With as much as $180 million worth of confiscated goods and 1100 production facilities shut down, the Chinese government could use some additional international help.

As an agency dedicated to cracking down on large-scale crime around the world, INTERPOL could greatly help to eliminate the production and trade of fake medicine around the world.


[Your Name Here]

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