MANILA - Authorities on Tuesday seized almost P2 million worth of misbranded and unregistered skin whitening injectables in simultaneous raids in 2 barangays in Quezon City.
Armed with search warrants, the Food and Drug Administration and Quezon City Police District's Special Operations Unit raided the house of Lilian Marte on Natividad Street, Barangay Paltok and of Michelle Cablayan on William Extension Street, Barangay Bahay Toro.
Arrested during the operation were Lilian Marte, Daniel Castillo, Viel Anjoe Somidos, Mylene De Vera, Rommel De Vera, Mark Adrian Roces and Jeffrey Oserio.
The FDA said Marte and Cablayan were peddling unregistered products online.
Investigators said the confiscated vials of skin whitening injectables such as Glutax 2000GS, Glutax 10000 and Aqua Skin EGF Whitening PROQ10 have not undergone necessary testing by the FDA and are being sold online.
"Malaking side effect lalo yung mga ini-intake, posibleng di ka na nga pumuti, magka-allergy ka pa," Randy Quiom, special investigator of the FDA Regulatory Enforcement Unit, warned.
Chief Superintendent Guillermo Eleazar, QCPD director, said they were tipped off about the sale of non-FDA approved whitening injectables by a complainant.
"Nagkaroon tayo ng test buy operation at yung mga products natin, dinala natin sa FDA para ma-examine nila. 'Yung mga violations, hindi naka-register, walang license to operate," Eleazar said.
Authorities warned the public from buying unregistered cosmetics, drugs and medicines on the internet.
"Whether counterfeit or original siya from other countries, violation na 'yon ng FDA Act natin dito kase hindi registered sa kanila. Walang license to operate," Eleazar said.
"Wala silang ini-issue na resibo. Hindi mati-trace sa kanila. Online pero hindi naman nila kilala ang mga supplier. Dinadala lang sa kanila. Pinagdadalhan nila ngayon, pwedeng clinic, doktor, pwedeng ibang website o online na ni-refer sa kanila," he added.
Quiom added most of the online sellers do not have license to sell cosmetics and drugs online.
"Kapag ganyang online, walang specific na lugar. Wala pang ini-issue ang FDA na license sa mga online sellers," Quiom said.
He advised the public to always check if the products they are using have been registered under the FDA.
"Gawin nating hobby na i-check ang product name. Ita-type lamang po ito sa website, then mave-verify po natin ang kalidad. Bumili po tayo sa kilalang bilihan ng gamot," Quiom said.