Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Guilty plea in medicines case

Media Release

October 9, 2006

Guilty plea in medicines case - Ministry

IT Pharmaceutical Supplies Ltd (ITP) has pleaded guilty to six charges under the Medicines Act in a case brought by the Ministry of Health's business unit Medsafe.

The case was heard this afternoon in the Manukau District Court, with the company fined a total of $9000, plus costs of $6000 and court costs of $780.

ITP came to Medsafe's attention after New Zealand Customs seized a consignment of medicines en route to Vanuatu. Following an investigation the Ministry concluded that ITP was sourcing medicines from overseas companies in Germany, Turkey and England and then selling them to purchasers in Vanuatu for on-sale over the internet.

The medicines involved were "new medicines" and had not been approved for sale in New Zealand by the Minister of Health, as required under the Medicines Act. The Ministry says that the sale of medicines without this consent from New Zealand is an offence.

Medsafe's Team Leader of Compliance Derek Fitzgerald has welcomed the guilty plea saying that the Medicines Act is designed to protect public health and safety by ensuring consumers receive medicines that are safe, effective and of acceptable quality.

ITP has agreed to no longer sell or distribute medicines, either in New Zealand or from New Zealand, unless those medicines have Ministerial consent.

"If a medicine distributed within or from New Zealand does not have Ministerial consent and has not been evaluated by Medsafe, there is no guarantee that the medicine is safe to use, or that the medicine actually contains what it says on the label".

Even though these medicines were unlikely to be sold to local consumers, Mr Fitzgerald said New Zealand was a responsible member of the international community, and should act to deter residents from selling medicines to overseas purchasers if these sales breached the Medicines Act.

"It appears the medicines concerned in this case were destined for supply to consumers around the world via internet sale," Mr Fitzgerald said.

Medsafe is concerned about the supply of prescription medicines without prescriptions via internet sale as it considers there are real dangers for consumers in this practice, he said.

"New Zealand has a good reputation when it comes to the international distribution of medicines. Companies who use New Zealand as a port of call before selling medicines over the internet are taking advantage of this reputation and are in danger of eroding it if this becomes an established practice," Mr Fitzgerald said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news