NBI nabs medrep selling fake Sanofi flu vaccines

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 28 2009 03:45 PM | Updated as of Jul 29 2009 07:08 AM

Agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) have arrested a former sales agent of a pharmaceutical company for distributing fake flu vaccines.

Nabbed was Jennifer Cristobal, former medical sales representative of Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of Sanofi-Aventis Group.

Vicente de Guzman III, chief of the NBI's Anti-Fraud and Computer Crimes Division, said the drug company sought the NBI's help after learning of the proliferation of fake Vaxigrip, a flu vaccine being manufactured by the company.

De Guzman said that according to the company, Vaxigrip is usually sold at P4,000 per 10-shot vial. He said the fake flu vaccine distributed by Cristobal costs only P3,000 per vial.

"Nagreklamo ang Sanofi sa IP International at sa NBI. Nagsagawa kami ng test buy operation," the NBI official said.

After the test buy, the NBI found out that the flu vaccine vials being distributed by Cristobal actually contained "mineral water."

Seized from Cristobal were P4-million worth of fake Vaxigrip vials.

A criminal case of sale of counterfeit drugs is being readied against the suspect.

De Guzman, meanwhile, said that the NBI has learned that Cristobal has sold thousands of vials in various drug stores in the cities of Manila and Makati and Laguna province. With a report from Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News